Jewish community Emet weShalom
The Jewish community Emet weShalom was founded in Kassel in 1995. It is one of the first liberal Jewish communities in Germany to be founded after the Shoah and is a founding member of the umbrella organization Union of Progressive Jews in Germany K.d.ö.R., founded in 1997. Emet weShalom is currently the only liberal Jewish community in Hesse and is home to Jews from all over the state and beyond.
Between 2001 and 2010, the municipal seat was in Gudensberg in northern Hesse. Since June 2010, the municipality has had its seat in Felsberg. Initially, the services took place in rented rooms. Since 2016, the community has been located on a historic site in the old Felsberg synagogue.
Families and children
The family group meets monthly for joint activities.They learn together, prepare the holidays, decorate the congregation for holidays and much more. The current highlight was the Purim play.
Bat/Bar Mitzvah classes are available by arrangement.
Regional and in the world
The community is connected both in the region and beyond.
In Northern Hesse, they are involved as a community and through their members in many ways and receive a lot of support, e.g. from the Sparkassenstiftung.
In the old synagogue there are regular services according to liberal rites. The language of worship is Hebrew, whereby there are prayers with translations into German, English and Russian.
There is at least one Shabbat service a month, as well as events on Jewish holidays.
The Jewish Liberal Community Emet weShalom North Hesse sees itself as the successor of a lively and rich Jewish tradition in North Hesse. The following information is mainly taken from the book “The Jewish Communities in Hesse” by Paul Arnsberg from 1971:
“There had been Jewish inhabitants in Gudensberg since 1646. In 1825 a Jewish elementary school was built there and in 1730 a Jewish cemetery. The synagogue, built in 1843, now serves the city of Gudensberg as a cultural center and is used by Emet weShalom on Jewish holidays.
In Felsberg a Schutzjude was mentioned as early as 1593. The community had a school, a mikvah and a cemetery.”
Dates are available on request.
Guided tours for educational institutions are offered. Several members of the community are also active in the voluntary initiative Rent A Jew, which presents current Jewish life through personal encounters.
The synagogue is located in the old town of Felsberg at Ritterstraße 3.
A drive directly in front of the synagogue is possible – the street is paved. The synagogue itself is located on the ground floor and can be reached at ground level. Unfortunately, There is not currently a barrier-free toilet. The existing toilets can be reached via a low level. All other rooms are accessible by wheelchair or stroller.