The synagogue in Nowy Sącz, Poland, which long housed a museum, is being used once again for religious services by Hassidim visiting the tombs of the Tzaddik Chaim Halberstam and his descendants in the Jewish cemetery.
Virtual Shtetl reports that the museum management “handed over the keys to the Krakow Jewish community” in August, and Shabbat was observed there on Sept. 4.
The building, constructed in the 18th century and used as a warehouse after World War II, belongs to the Jewish Religious Community in Krakow which leased it to the museum, which opened there in 1982. The museum had allowed Hassidim to pray in a room in the building, but, Virtual Shtetl reports, “problems emerged with the 24 hour access or displaying the exhibits in the museum which might raise concern of the praying people.”
Under the new arrangement, the New York-based Bonei Sanz Foundation will take care of the “running, renovation and maintenance of the synagogue,” returning it to its original function.
The Foundation has already purchased a building in town for use as a guest house and a kosher canteen. There are also plans to build a mikvah and smaller prayer house.
It is not clear what will happen to the museum’s collection, which includes Judaica and other Jewish articles.