Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people. Matthew 4:23

A Visit to a Synagogue

Synagogues vary enormously in architectural style and religious practice.  

The following photographs show some of the common features of a synagogue.

This synagogue resembles a free church chapel as it was once a Methodist church.

At the front there is no altar, but there is an Ark where the Torah scrolls are kept.

The decorations do not have representations of living creatures, only objects representing the

Holy Days.

Notice the two tablets of the ten commandments.

The lessons are read from the Bimah.

Above the Ark is a light called the Ner Tamid which always burns as a symbol of God's presence. It also represents the pillar of fire that guided the Jewish people on their early journey.

The Torah scrolls are kept in the Ark, behind a curtain that is decorated with the banners of the tribes of Israel.

Behind the curtain are the Torah scrolls in their cases, or soft covers.  The scrolls are said to be "dressed".

The scrolls are decorated with items that recall the role of the priests in the Temple.

The Breast piece.

The Rimmonim.  (Rimmonim means pomegranates.  The high Priest's robe was trimmed with pomegranates and bells)

With thanks to our friends at the Reform Synagogue in Cardiff, for their warm welcome and informative tour.

 

 

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