First time: Synagogue in Kibbutz Kinneret

After 105 years, first prayer structure in kibbutz to be dedicated. 'Exciting day of closing circle.'

Mordechai Sones,

New synagogue at Kibbutz Kinneret
New synagogue at Kibbutz Kinneret

It's never too late: Kibbutz Kinneret is wearing their Sabbath-finest this evening when, 105 years since the first settlers arrived on the ground, they inaugurate for the first time a synagogue in their community.

The synagogue's cornerstone was laid about a year ago. The Religious Services Ministry took upon itself the construction costs, estimated at half-a-million shekels. Kibbutz Kinneret paid for infrastructure and development. "The synagogue's location was determined by kibbutz members, and a vote was also taken among kibbutz members regarding constructing the synagogue, which was supported by most of the members."

"This is an exciting day of closing a circle for me," says Religious Affairs Ministry Director Attorney Oded Plus. "The first Chief Rabbi of Israel, Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaCohen Kook zt"l, who made trips among the settlers, arrived at Kinneret and was sorry that they had not been able to build a synagogue. Today we merit to close a circle."

Kibbutz Kinneret symbolizes one of the cornerstones of the settlement of the Land of Israel. The founders of the settlement were immigrants from Yemen who later moved to Rehovot and immigrants from the Second Aliya. About a decade after establishment, some members left and were joined by immigrants of the Third Aliya. Among those from Kinneret are: Berl Katznelson, Nachman Sirkin, and Rachel HaMishoreret. Naomi Shemer of Jerusalem of Gold fame, from the Kibbutz, was also buried in the local cemetery.