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Rabbi

Our Holocaust Torah Scroll

Our Holocaust Torah is a “saved scroll”, recovered after World War II  from a destroyed community in Europe. We have become shomrim (guardians) of this Torah and we are honored to have it in our congregation.  It is housed inside our ark and is used during services and special celebrations.

Our scroll comes from the Memorial Scrolls Trust, MST #1234, (the repository for saved scrolls) at the Westminster Synagogue in London, England. It was recorded by the Jewish Museum in Prague as having been collected from Caslav-Kolin. It is an Orphan scroll form an unknown town in Bhoemia and Moravia.  For more information see “The Jewish Sights of Bohemia and Moravia” by Jiri Fiedler, published in 1991. The author notes the following: Caslav is a town in Bohemia, 70km ESE of Prague. Up to the mid-19th century only one Jewish family was allowed to reside in Caslav. When the Jews were granted civic equality under law in the mid-19th century, Jews from the neighboring villages started to move to Caslav.

Temple Beth Shalom member Lee Shedroff visited the Synagogue in Caslav when it was restored in 2012. Lee was the caretaker of a small scroll, which he returned to the Memorial Scrolls Trust in London in 2024. The small scroll had been used during Temple Beth Shalom special events over the years.

Czech Holocaust Celebratory
60-Year Commemoration

Temple Beth Shalom of the West Valley members participated in the Czech Holocaust Torah Celebratory Commemoration in 2024 at the Culver Plotkin Jewish Heritage Center in downtown Phoenix.

 

Temple Beth Shalom's Czech torah was part of the commemoration along with members of other synagogues and their Czech torahs. The Czech scrolls are survivors and silent witnesses. They represent not only the lost communities of Bohemia and Moravia but all those who perished in the Shoah.

The commemoration marked 60 years since the torahs were rescued from a warehouse in Prague and sent to London's Westminster Synagogue.

About the Memorial Scrolls Trust 

The Memorial Scrolls Trust is responsible for 1,564 Czech Torah scrolls worldwide. These torahs were gathered from synagogues throughout the region by Nazi officials. The scrolls were rescued from the Holocaust by the Prague Jewish community and were brought to Westminster Synagogue, London, in 1964. Today, thanks to the work of the Memorial Scrolls Trust, these scrolls have been allocated on permanent or long term loan to synagogues, and take a message of hope, continuity and resilience to every corner of the globe.The Trust is a global center for learning, remembrance, and community. For more information, visit www.memorialscrollstrust.org.

View the Nazi Transport List of the Caslav Jewish population to Terezin. Click on the image below to view a slideshow with four pages of names.

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