Antwerp's Great Synagogue reopens after restoration
The Great Synagogue in Antwerp was reopened on Sunday after restoration work. Prime minister Alexander De Croo (Open VLD) and the mayor of Antwerp, Bart De Wever (N-VA), attended the ceremony.
The building is the main synagogue of the well-known Orthodox Jewish community Machsike Hadas. It is a monumental Art Nouveau complex, the last of seven synagogues built in Antwerp between 1865 and 1914.
"The understated, timeless style of this building perfectly reflects time-honoured Jewish traditions and customs"
"The synagogue has existed for over 100 years, and thanks to this fantastic renovation, it is ready for the next 100 years," said De Croo at the ceremony. "The understated, timeless style of this building perfectly reflects time-honoured Jewish traditions and customs."
He said that Antwerp's Jewish community was "a vivid reminder that our Belgian strength lies in our diversity".
"This beautifully renovated shul will also serve as a meeting place for the Orthodox Jews of Antwerp in the coming years," he added. "As prime minister, I am particularly proud that Belgium will continue to be a warm home for our Jewish community, which is a cornerstone of our society, both religiously and culturally."
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