A religious service was organized by the French authorities and the Consistory of France at the Synagogue of the Latin Quarter rue Vauquelin in Paris 5th to pay homage to the “Dead for France”.
Many personalities were present:
• Representative of the President of the Republic
• Representative of the Paris City Hall
• Ambassadors and Ambassadors from different countries
• Representative of the Paris Prefecture
• Representatives of the Army Corps
• Representatives of the French Government
• Representatives of Veterans and War Victims Associations
After a welcome message from Hubert GHANASSIA, President of the Synagogue, Rabbi Simon AZOULAY lit the candles.
Then the Chief Rabbi of Paris Michel GUGGENHEIM intervened to thank all the participants and the French Republic. He quoted the passage from the Parshah of the week Haye Sarah to explain how Avraham had acquired the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron to bury Sarah: this is where Adam and Eve also rest.
After the singing of Ki Leka’h Tov, the President of the Consistory of France Joel MERGUI took the floor. He recalled the attachment of the Jews of France to the French Republic through history and the commitment that the Jews had made under Napoleon: “We will go to the death to defend our Fatherland, France”.
He cited the example of Moses De Camondo (1860-1935), Banquier in Paris who, having lost his son Nissim military during the First World War, had decided to bequeath all his fortune to France and whose daughter Béatrice died in deportation with her daughter and her husband.
Unfortunately Moses de Camondo had no other descent and his house became a museum in Paris: the Nissim
Paris November 9, 2017
By Gisele GROSZ – For the New York Jewish Travel Guide