Synagogue in Indura
Churches, katolik churches, сathedral, monasteries
In Belarus, you may find many synagogues since the history of the country and its culture is linked with the Jewish people. We can't say exactly how many Jews live today in Belarus. However, according to some data, about thirteen thousand Jews live in Belarus. Jews mostly speak with each other in Russian, and only a small number – in Belarusian and Hebrew. The first Jews arrived in Minsk in the XIV century. At that time, Judaism became one of the traditional religions in Belarus.
Nowadays, there are only four functioning synagogues in Belarus, located in Minsk, Grodno, Pinsk and Bobruisk. Once there were 44 synagogues in one Minsk!
An old synagogue, built in 1885, is located in an agro-town called Indura, Grodno region. The synagogue is a house of worship but often official meetings of religious believers took place and pupils were taught there.
The synagogue was built in the restrained classical style with a minimum of decorative elements. The building is built of beige brick and occupies quite a vast area. Indura synagogue was built in accordance with all rules: it is located on the highest point of the village, the main wall of the prayer house facing towards Jerusalem. A long corridor inside the synagogue allows a religious believer to free his mind and heart fr om negative emotions, worries, and everyday problems. Torah is kept in the holiest place of the synagogue. At all times, Torah has been treated with special attention – it was forbidden to touch it with bare hands. Special pointers were used for reading.
The synagogue is in bad condition in Indura. It stopped performing its primary function. The synagogue has been used as storage since 1940. Today, the synagogue is emptied and forgotten. It is full of garbage and debris, windows boarded with wooden planks. The outer walls of the Jewish house are in satisfactory condition. The desolation of the synagogue and its gradual destruction can be explained – the Jewish people left Indura village.
The same sad fate is linked with other synagogues in Belarus. An urban-type settlement of Porozovo on the Ross River had two synagogues, one of which was burned, the other one made of rubble stone stands today. Nowadays, the synagogue is abandoned.
The Belarusian yeshiva, located in Volozhin, is of peculiar interest. Yeshiva was higher religious institution for Jewish boys, wh ere they obtained the necessary knowledge and were brought up within the strict cultural customs and traditions. In the end of education, students awarded the title rabbi – i.e. religious believers who knew the Talmud and Torah. The building of the synagogue was closed in 1939 for strange reasons. According to one version, the leader of the yeshiva refused to accept the new rules on the Russification of teachers and disciplines that had been developed by the Minister of Education. The building of the synagogue is gradually falling into decay; restoration works are not conducted.
If you are interested in the history and culture of the Jewish people, it is recommended to visit the Jewish Museum, which is located in Minsk. The museum has more than 10 thousand unique exhibits, including personal belongings of famous Jews, household items, books, works of art, as well as handwritten parchment of the Torah.