Houston Jews on the Homefront

By Katie Webber, HJHA Intern

Over the past few weeks I’ve been sorting through a box we’ve recently acquired from Beth Yeshurun. This collection is special because it is the remaining pieces from Beth El Synagogue, a synagogue which later joined with Adath Yeshurun to become Beth Yeshurun, now the largest Conservative synagogue in the United States. This box has included some amazing materials from Beth El, specifically from the late 30’s and early 40’s with an extensive collection of letters from active duty service members serving in World War II.

However, the pieces which have been the most interesting to me haven’t been letters from Tunisia or France, it’s been the materials from right here in Houston. The Rabbis of the City of Houston formed a special campaign which advocated for local Houstonians to play their part in helping those in Eastern Europe who were without food. These campaign materials spoke to the shared humanity of all people as “brothers” and the moral responsibility of Houstonians as both Americans and as Jews to help others in need.

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