Mexican Purim Celebration

Chabad Lubavich of Lithuania is celebrating Purim this year with a Mexican theme.

The celebration begins at 6:00 P.M. on Wednesday, March 20, at the Grand Resort Hotel (formerly the Villon Hotel) in Vilnius.

There will be a reading of the Esther scroll, followed by a klezmer concert, with Mexican food, a kosher piñata, more music, dancing and a Mexican bar (margaritas). There will also be a carnival costume contest for the kids and adults, and lots of games.

Tickets are 10 euros for adults (15 at the door), 5 euros for senior citizens and children, and children under 12 get in free. Tickets are available at the Choral Synagogue (Pylimo street no. 39, Vilnius), Chabad House (Bokšto street no. 19, Vilnius) or via bank transfer to the Jewish Religious Community Chabad, account no. LT35 7044 0600 0137 1339.

Regulations for the Makabi Swimming Championship

Regulations for the Makabi Swimming Championship

Competition Goals and Tasks

To popularize the sport of swimming among members of the Lithuanian Makabi Athletics Club. To select the best swimmers for competition at the international Maccabiah Games.

Time and Location

The competitions will be held from 11:00 A.M. to 1:00 P.M. on March 31, 2019, at the multifunctional sporting and entertainment complex Girstutis, at Kovo 11-osios street no. 26, Kaunas. Competitors are to arrive by 10:30 A.M.


Swimmers of all ages may participate who after making application will be divided into age groups.

The cost to participate is 3 euros for those born after 2000 and 5 euros for those born in and before 1999.

Applications can be e-mailed to providing the age of the applicant, an e-mail address and a mobile telephone number before 12 midnight on March 27, 2019.

The coordinator in Vilnius is Artiom Perepleica at

Competition Program and Prizes

25-meter free style

50-meter breast stroke

All participants will receive souvenir medals.

Prize-winners in their age groups will receive special prizes.

M. Duškesas, executive director
Lithuanian Makabi Athletics Club

List of Speakers and Performers for Limmud 2019

List of Speakers and Performers for Limmud 2019

Speakers and performers to include:

Ilya Kalmanovskiy, journalist, teacher, educational program enthusiast and moderator (Moscow)

Boruch Gorin, journalist, writer, editor of Lekhaim magazine (Moscow)

Juriy Tabak, religious studies expert, translator, author (Moscow)

Aleksandr Dukhovny, senior rabbi of progressive Jewish congregations (Kiev)

Sasha Galitsky, artist, author (Israel)

Regina Pats, cinema expert, to speak on new program of Israeli films (Tallinn)

Dr. Lara Lempertienė, scholar, director of Lithuanian National Library’s Judaica Studies Center

Bar/Bat Mitzva Ceremony at Choral Synagogue in Vilnius

A bar and bat mitzva ceremony was held at the Choral Synagogue Monday, March 11, conducted by Rabbi Sholom Ber Krinsky. Five young people sat at the set table and listened intently to the rabbi’s talk and congratulations on their rite of passage from youth to adulthood.

Parents and children gathered for this important religious ritual. Boys aged 13 and girls aged 12 are considered adults according to Jewish tradition. Bar mitzva literally means “son of the law” and bat mitzva “daughter of the law” because this is the age at which people become responsible for following all the laws of the Torah.

The young adults received symbolic gifts and the celebration continued with a feast at the table.

Bar and bat mitzvas are more than just a family celebration, they’re celebrated by the entire Jewish community. Congratulations to all the participants!

Monument to Icchokas Meras to be Unveiled in Kelmė

Monument to Icchokas Meras to be Unveiled in Kelmė

A monument to Litvak writer Icchokas Meras (October 8, 1934 – March 13, 2014) is to be unveiled on the fifth anniversary of his death on Icchokas Meras Square in his hometown of Kelmė, Lithuania, at 1:00 P.M. on March 13, 2019. Meras, a Holocaust survivor, wrote in Lithuanian and won numerous awards in Israel and Lithuania. His work has been translated into over 25 languages including Yiddish and Hebrew. He moved to Israel in 1972 and passed away in Tel Aviv in 2014 at the age of 79.

The monument is the fruit of cooperation between the Lithuanian Jewish Community, the Jakovas Bunka welfare and support fund, the Lithuanian Jerusalem Vilnius Jewish Community and the Kelmė regional administration.

Those wishing to attend are invited to send notice of their intention to because the LJC plans to provide free transportation to and from the event if there is sufficient interest. Please send an email by March 11 or call 8 673 77257 for more information.

Paying Last Respects to Tobijas Jafetas

Paying Last Respects to Tobijas Jafetas

Those wishing to pay their respects to the late Tobijas Jafetas and to sit with his family members are invited to come to the Nutrūkusi styga funeral home at Ąžuolyno street no. 10 in Vilnius (next to the Sudervės road cemetery) from 3:00 P.M. to 10:00 P.M. on Wednesday or from 8:00 Am till 12:30 P.M. on Thursday when his mortal remains will be laid to rest.

Limmud 2019 March 15-17 in Druskininkai, Lithuania

Limmud 2019 March 15-17 in Druskininkai, Lithuania

The educational and entertaining conference on Judaism Limmud 2019 will be held in Druskininkai, Lithuania, from March 15 to 17. The program includes the weekend in the scenic Lithuanian spa town, activities, valuable lectures, seminars on academic excellence, screenings of films, excursions, a special Sabbath and much more.

The three-day conference will be held at the Europa Royale hotel at Vilniaus alley no. 7 in Druskininkai.

For more information, call +370 67881514 or send an email to

Registration is now closed.

Speakers to include:

Ąžuoliukas Anniversary Concert at LJC

The Lithuanian Jewish Community and the Ąžuoliukas Music School will hold a chamber ensemble concert to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the school and the 60th anniversary of the Ąžuoliukas Boys and Young Men’s Choir.

The concert begins at 5:00 P.M. on Thursday, February 28, at the Lithuanian Jewish Community, Pylimo street no. 4, Vilnius.

Bar/Bat Mitzvah Ceremony at Choral Synagogue

The Choral Synagogue in Vilnius is to hold a bar and bat mitzvah ceremony at 4:00 P.M. on March 11 for boys about to turn or already 13 and girls about to turn or already 12.

To register send an email to or call 8 685 08 550.

Conference on Interpersonal Relationships

Alfred Adler was a Jewish doctor and psychotherapist from Austria who developed the methods of individual psychology based on a holistic appreciation of the individual and the principle of equality, breaking away from his mentor Sigmund Freud. Beginning in 1912 he gave a series of lectures on the subject, published later in English in 1925. The term “individual psychology” (German Individualpsychologie) does not mean to focus on the individual. Adler said one must take into account the patient’s whole environment, including the people the patient associates with. The term “individual” is used to mean the patient is an indivisible whole.

The Lithuanian Individual Psychology Association invites everyone interested to attend their annual conference. This year’s conference is called “Relationships as a Couple: To Be or Not to Be” and is aimed at psychologists, doctors, social workers, teachers and everyone interested in interpersonal psychology. The conference is to take place at the Corner Hotel at T. Ševčenkos street no. 16 in Vilnius March 16. The conference will be multilingual with translation into Lithuania. Speakers include Rašelė Šeraitė, director of the family support section at the LJC Social Department.

To learn more and to register, see

Concert for Grigoriy Kanovich’s 90th Birthday

Concert for Grigoriy Kanovich’s 90th Birthday

Dear readers,

The first in a series of events to celebrate the 90th year of Litvak writer Grigoriy Kanovich will be a concert tonight, Wednesday, February 27, at 7:00 P.M. at the Vaidila Theater on Jakšto street no. 9 in Vilnius.

Lukas Geniušas will perform on piano works by Chopin and Tchaikovsky. This will also be the premiere of contemporary composer Leonid Desyatnikov’s Songs of Bukovina.

Audience members will receive a surprise gift as well.

Tickets available at

Vilma Gradinskaitė’s Exhibit Lithuania in Litvak Art

Vilma Gradinskaitė’s Exhibit Lithuania in Litvak Art

A second exhibit about Litvaks has opened at the Town Hall section of the Kaunas City Museum. Dr. Vilma Gradinskaitė of the Vilna Gaon State Jewish Museum has added “Lithuania in Litvak Art” to the already-running exhibit on Litvak photographers in the interwar period.

The new exhibit shows how Lithuania was portrayed in painting, graphics arts, poetry, novels, songs, plays and films by Litvaks.

Organizers say the exhibit has a special audio guide which makes it accessible to those with sight disabilities. There is a hands-on item for children as well. The exhibit will run till March 31. The photography exhibit closes April 1.

Visit LJC Stand and Events at the Vilnius Book Fair

The Lithuanian Jewish Community will have a stand at the Vilnius Book Fair which opens February 21 and concludes on February 24. The stand number is 3.19.

At 2:00 P.M. on Thursday, February 21, Uriel Leviatan’s book “Iš rankų į rankas” [“From Hand to Hand,” translated from the Hebrew to Lithuanian by Victoria Sideraitė-Alon with an introduction by Dalia Epšteinaitė, who also edited the Lithuanian version] will be presented by the LJC in hall 3.1 at the Vilnius Book Fair. At 3:00 P.M. on Saturday, February 23, a presentation of Litvak literature celebrating the 90th birthday of Grigoriy Kanovich will be held in hall 5.2.

Presentation of Uri Levitan’s Book “From Hand to Hand” at LJC

Presentation of Uri Levitan’s Book “From Hand to Hand” at LJC

The Lithuanian Jewish Community kindly invites you to attend a presentation of the book “Iš rankų į rankas” [“From Hand to Hand,” translated from the Hebrew to Lithuanian by Victoria Sideraitė-Alon with an introduction by Dalia Epšteinaitė, who also edited the Lithuanian version] by head of the Sociology and Anthropology Faculty and head of the Kibbutz Institute of Haifa University professor Uriel Leviatan and a meeting with the author at 6:00 P.M. on Thursday, February 21, at the LJC in Vilnius.

Professor Leviatan was born in Kaunas. His grandfather Isaac Leviatan was a renowned gynecologist in prewar Lithuania. The birthing clinic he created on Miško street in Kaunas in 1926 is still operating. Isaac Leviatan was a talented doctor and an active figure in Kaunas public life. He became chairman of the Zionist party Zionim Klaleem in 1935 and was the long-time representative of that party at Zionist congresses held in Europe.

Of the family of Isaac Leviatan renowned in Kaunas and throughout Lithuania, only Uriel survived through a kind of miracle. His parents sensed the coming liquidation of the ghetto in 1943 and made sure three-year-old Uriel was smuggled out of the ghetto…

Launch of Book about Jews of Švėkšna

Launch of Book about Jews of Švėkšna

Monika Žąsytienė, a Bagel Shop project volunteer and museum specialist, has written a book called “Švėkšnos žydų bendruomenė XVII–XX a.” [The Jewish Community of Švėkšna from the 17th to the 20th Century].

The Bagel Shop Café will host the launch of the new book at 6:00 P.M. on February 19. Register here.

According to the author, the book makes no pretense of being an historical work. Instead, Monika Žąsytienė sought to bring together local lore and regional history for future work on the subject. She made use of material from Lithuanian archives, Yad Vashem and the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D. C. Some of the information–testimonies, memoirs, correspondence in Yiddish, Hebrew, German and English–appears for the first time in Lithuanian in her book.

Exhibit by Kaunas Collector at Choral Synagogue in Vilnius

Exhibit by Kaunas Collector at Choral Synagogue in Vilnius

An exhibit of items in the collection of well-known collector Michailis Duškesas regarding pre-war Vilnius Jewish organizations is on display at the Choral Synagogue in Vilnius showing the rich and active life of Vilnius Jews before the Holocaust.

Thank you to Michailis and Natalija Duškesai of Kaunas who made the effort to organize and set up this unique exhibit in Vilnius.

The second floor of the synagogue is still hosting an exhibit of photographs of wooden synagogues as well. The photos were donated by Daumantas Todesas, director of the Jakov Bunka support and welfare fund.

Bagel Shop Celebrates Third Birthday

Bagel Shop Celebrates Third Birthday

The Bagel Shop Café is the café the Lithuanian Jewish Community opened three years ago on the first floor. Celebrating Litvak culinary heritage and traditions, the Bagel Shop makes bagels according to a family recipe and makes Sabbath challa every Friday, as well as many other items, and special foods on holidays. It began as an idea in 2014, as part of a tolerance campaign of the same name sponsored in part by a grant from Norway and aimed at fighting discrimination and anti-Semitism. Eventually the Bagel Shop became a real bagel shop.

Three years later, we’ve decided to surprise our customers and visitors with a presentation of Israeli street food and culture. Throughout February we’ll be baking pita, making falafel and talking about food.

Everyone’s invited at 10:00 A.M. on Sunday, February 17, to an educational celebration at the LJC where you’ll have the opportunity to sample falafel and sabih made the Israeli way, with musical accompaniment. Israeli ambassador to Lithuania Amir Maimon will talk about Israeli street food and Rabbi Sholom Ber Krinsky will teach on the topic of kosher food. Vilnius Jewish Religious Community chairman Simas Levinas is to take part in the event and synagogue cantor Shmuel Yatom will perform. Visitors will also have the chance to speak personally with Bagel Shop chef Riva Portnaja and others about Jewish cuisine.

CRIF Calls for National Response to Surge in Anti-Semitism in France

CRIF Calls for National Response to Surge in Anti-Semitism in France


Paris, le 12 février 2019

Press release

CRIF calls for a national bounce against anti-Semitism

French interior minister Christophe Castaner announced anti-Semitic acts increased by 74% in 2018. This reflects a disturbing release of anti-Jewish hatred.

Portraits of Simone Veil desecrated with swastikas, the grove in memory of Ilan Halimi vandalized, the tag Juden on a shop window in Paris … the last days alone testify to the banalization and violence of anti-Semitism in France in 2019.

CRIF recalls these statistics do not include acts which did not lead to a complaint, nor anti-Semitic publications on internet. Thus they reflect only very partially the reality of “everyday anti-Semitism” faced by French Jews.

CRIF is concerned by the violence of the anti-Semitism on social networks which contributes to the inculcation of anti-Semitism and conspiracy in the minds of the younger generation.

For CRIF, the general plans set up to fight hatred appear ineffective, unfortunately. It is now necessary to provide targeted responses to each instance of the hate which is tearing our society apart.

President Francis Kalifat is calling for a “national bounce against anti-Semitism.” He emphasizes: “beyond being a threat to Jews, anti-Semitism is a sign of the weakening of democracy in our country. On the eve of the anniversary of the assassination of Ilan Halimi, CRIF is hoping for a welcome bounce from French society to break the wall of indifference which surrounds anti-Semitism.”

Lithuanian State Auditor’s Office Completes Annual Audit of Goodwill Foundation

Lithuanian State Auditor’s Office Completes Annual Audit of Goodwill Foundation

The Lithuanian State Auditor’s Office has completed an annual audit of the Goodwill Foundation for the proper management, use and disbursement of state budget funds in the year 2018. The audit was conducted according to the requirements of the Lithuanian State Auditor’s Office and to the highest standards of international auditing agencies.

The Lithuanian State Auditor’s Office’s audit of the proper management, use and disbursement of funds the Lithuanian Government Chancellery allocated to the Goodwill Foundation in 2018 found there had been no violations.

The audit report can be viewed in Lithuanian here.

Lithuanian State Auditor’s Office press release here.