The European Days of Jewish Culture 2022 kicked off yesterday in the French town of Schirmek, in Alsace, France. Coordinated by the AEPJ through a large network of institutions, the festival, where the Jewish heritage is opened to the general public, with the aim of promoting dialogue, recognition and exchange, will take place in Italy on September 18th and see Ferrara as the leading city. The reason behind the choice of Schirmeck is highly symbolic. In a historical act, the Sefer Torah of this small town, saved during the Holocaust by the Christian friend of a young Jewish deportee, was returned to the synagogue after an extraordinary journey that lasted 77 years and crossed Europe, Northern Africa, and Jerusalem.
To the ceremony participated the deputy Secretary general of the Council of Europe Bjorn Berge and the board of the AEPJ in the figures of the two Italian components of the executive: Annie Sacerdoti and Claudia De Benedetti. The first also as vice president of the Jewish Cultural Heritage Foundation in Italy.
This year, the European Days of Jewish Culture, which has a partnership with the National Library of Israel, has as a central theme Renewal. More than a hundred Italian locations, all across the country, will take part on September 18th with meetings, lectures, and cultural itineraries.
The festival will kick off in the synagogue of Ferrara and many events will follow in the area of the city’s historical ghetto and at the National Museum of Italian Judaism and the Shoah-MEIS, which from September 15 to 18th, will host the Jewish Book Festival and other initiatives. Here the program of the events.
From top, the historical Sefer Torah returned to Schirmeck; the AEPJ board at the ceremony.