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Religion: Hadassah

2 minute read

Distaff branch of U. S. Zionism is Hadassah (Hebrew for Esther, the great Biblical queen). Since its founding 26 years ago, Hadassah has paralleled the economic and political labors of male Zionist bodies by pouring into Palestine $10,000,000 for hospitals, clinics, welfare centres of all kinds. Last week at its annual convention in St. Louis, Hadassah, like all Zionist bodies today, fretted over Palestine’s future.

Hadassah’s aged but still hard-working founder, 77-year-old Henrietta Szold, once of Baltimore, was last week in Jerusalem, directing the Youth Aliyah (immigration) movement of which Hadassah is the U. S. agency. Since 1935, the Aliyah has settled 3,100 European Jewish youngsters, aged 15 to 18, in 35 co-operative youth villages and three technical schools in Palestine.

The Aliyah pays about half the $625 cost of maintaining each child for two years—which must be guaranteed in advance before the British Government will issue an immigration certificate. Last March, Britain announced that as many certificates would be granted this year as the Aliyah could handle. Next day the Germans took Austria and handed Jews more woe. In Jerusalem stout-hearted Miss Szold quoted an old Jewish saw: ”The Lord provides the cure before the blow descends.”

With 4,000 applications from Jewish youth on file in Vienna alone, Hadassah aims to transport at least 1,500 to Palestine in the next year. Last week, during a few minutes of the St. Louis convention, Hadassah members subscribed half of the $250,000 budgeted for immigration this year.

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