Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A Rather Sad Article on Southern Jews (With A Christian Angle too) (Link Corrected)

A good article at Traveling rabbi serves tiny Southern congregations

It starts out like this:
NATCHEZ, Miss. -- As the sun inched below the horizon in this Mississippi River town, people arrived alone or in small groups and walked up the steps of Temple B'nai Israel on Shabbat.
Only about a dozen Jewish residents remain in Natchez, a city of about 16,400 best known for its elaborate plantation homes. As younger generations moved away, the congregation hasn't had its own full-time rabbi since 1976.
With a circuit-riding rabbi visiting on this Friday night, about 80 Catholics, Episcopalians, Presbyterians, Baptists and Methodists joined their Jewish neighbors and helped fill the wooden pews of the 105-year-old temple.
Rabbi Marshal Klaven gave people an extra 10 minutes to slip in before the service, joking that under "Jewish Standard Time," it's not unusual to run late.......

It does not shock me at all the attitude of the Christians we see above helping out. Most (well the ones that can recall) are dismayed that there are few Jews left in the South. My grandmother used to tell me all the time that you can barely get up the street for the cars when they had a event in Natchez.

Another friend, a Catholic from Vicksburg, told me when the Jews leave the town you know the town is going to hell in a hand basket. I must say looking at the state of the towns mentioned and those not in the surrounding area I have to agree there might have been something to that.

An interesting article but sad all the same.

Tip of the hat to holyweblog

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