Belarus Synagogue's Restoration Back on Track

GRODNO, Belarus - After an interruption in the construction process, which lasted nearly a year, work has once again commenced on the restoration of the historic Synagogue in Grodno, Belarus. As explained by Boris Kvyatkovskiy, the Chairman of the local Jewish community, this project will once again proceed thanks to the efforts of Rabbi Yitzchak Koyfman, who finally found a sponsor who has agreed to finance the partial repair of this historical and spiritual monument.

"This great undertaking is being sponsored by an Australia resident, Avi Silver, whose ancestors came from Grodno," explained Boris Kvyatkovskiy. "Because of his generous assistance, we are already able to conclude an agreement with specialists for conducting research on and completing the repair of fragments of the Choral Synagogue's facade". It is also planned to carry out an analysis of the physical-chemical makeup of the plaster and layers so that the restoration specialists may accurately repeat these ancient construction compositions.

The history of the Choral Synagogue dates back to the 16th century. It was then restored in the 17th century by the renowned Italian architect Canti Guchi. Other later restorative works were conducted on several occasions following damage from fires. During the Second World War, it was included in the territory covered by the ghetto.

The Jewish community of Grodno - a member of the Association of Jewish Communities of Belarus (an FJC CIS affiliate) - expressed its deep gratitude to all sponsors involved in the Synagogue's restoration and particularly to the Grodno City Council, which allocated 20 million Belorussian rubles (about US 8,500 dollars) for work on drafting the plans and cost estimations.



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