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Hungary Gains Orthodox Rabbi

January 08, 2003|From Associated Press

BUDAPEST, Hungary — Reviving rich prewar Jewish traditions, senior rabbis from Israel and Russia on Tuesday helped inaugurate the first Orthodox rabbi to be ordained in Hungary since the Holocaust.

The congregation of about 300 Orthodox Jews sang and clapped as Shlomo Koves, 23, was inducted at the tiny Chabad Lubavitch synagogue.

Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar of Russia and former Chief Rabbi Mordechai Eliahu of Israel joined Budapest Rabbi Boruch Oberlander in placing a prayer shawl around Koves' shoulders.

"Before World War II there was a large Orthodox Jewish community in Hungary," Oberlander said. "Unfortunately, most of them perished in the Holocaust, but we are turning a new page."

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