A visit to the spectacular synagogue is a journey through the chronicles of the time, since the arrival of Rabbi Judah the Hassid ( Rabbi Judah the Pious) and his students to Jerusalem in the seventeenth century, through to the revival of the Ashkenazi community at the onset of the nineteenth century, the desperate battles to defend the Jewish Quarter in 1948, and until the restoration of the area that began in 1970.
After complex reconstruction and building, which also revealed archeological findings from the Second Temple period, the inauguration of the Hurva Synagogue took place on Rosh Hodesh Nissan (1 Nissan) 5770 - 2010. Today, the synagogue’s dome once again graces the Jerusalem skyline. The synagogue accommodates a resplendent ark, which you will see stands at 11 meters high.
Private Events and Functions at the Hurva Synagogue
How would you like to hold your celebration at a venue imbued with atmosphere and historical importance, together with dedicated, professional staff? The Hurva Synagogue would be thrilled to host you and your guests for a variety of functions, including bar and bat mitzvahs right beside the Western Wall, weddings, birthdays, and many other celebrations!
If you like, you can combine your celebration with an enriching educational activity or a tour around the Old City. The synagogue staff will be glad to assist you in organizing your event, as they accompany you throughout the planning process, from the initial stages through to an unforgettable day of joy and celebration.
More About the Hurva Synagogue’s Rich History
In 1720, Jerusalem’s central synagogue, which stood in the Ashkenazi enclosure, was destroyed, since the company of Rabbi Judah the Hassid was unable to pay debts that had accumulated during the 20 years since arriving in Jerusalem. The synagogue received the nickname, The Ruin of Rabbi Judah the Hassid, and Ruin - or Hurva - for short. In 1864, the synagogue was impressively rebuilt and named Beit Yaakov; it became the symbol of the restoration of the settlement in the Land of Israel.
In 1948, the synagogue was destroyed once again, this time by the Jordanians, who well knew the significance of the structure for the Jews of Jerusalem, as an indication that no longer would there be a Jewish presence in the city. Following the intricate reconstruction that began in 2006, the rebuilt Hurva Synagogue was completed in Nissan 5770 (2010). The synagogue is considered one of the most beautiful in the world and now holds regular prayer services each day, as well as special services on New Year, the Day of Atonement, the three pilgrim festivals (Passover, Shavuot, Sukkot) , Memorial Day (Yom HaZikaron), Independence Day, and Jerusalem Day. Likewise, the synagogue holds ceremonies for bar mitzvahs, calling up to the Torah, and weddings where the canopy stands under the dome of heaven.
The Hurva Synagogue is a showcase of majesty with its towering height and dome that adorns the Jerusalem skyline, murals and splendid furnishings, a beautiful 11-meter ark that is the handwork of a craftsman, and its historical location over the remains of Jerusalem from its glory days of the temples. However, above all, the synagogue’s significance is as a national center and symbol declaring the way to redemption. The current synagogue is a reconstruction of the monumental synagogue that was destroyed during the War of Independence.