On June 15, 2003, the 59th anniversary
of the deportations of the 30,000 Jews from Bihor County and
the ghettos of Oradea was commemorated in a ceremony in the
Orthodox Synagogue on Mihai Viteazul Street and by the adjacent
Monument to the Deportees erected in 1946.
The Memorial Service was officiated by
Chief Rabbi Menachen Hacohen, representing the Jewish Community
of Romania, and Attorney Iulian Sorin, Secretary General of
the Federation of Jewish Communities of Romania. The funeral
prayer for the souls of the departed, “El Moley Rahamim”, was
chanted, followed by a candle lighting ceremony. Six survivors
each lighted one candle, to honor the memory of the six million
Jewish people killed during the Holocaust.
Teodor Felix Koppelman, President of
the Jewish Community of Oradea, spoke about the tragedy that
befell the Jewish people at that time and the responsibility,
shared by everyone, to remember their spirits.
Many of the several hundred Jewish residents
of Oradea attended the ceremony. Representatives of the Romanian
Orthodox, Protestant, Roman-Catholic and Greek-Catholic faiths
were present, as were members of the City Council, representatives
of various political parties, and many other Oradeans. The Jewish
Community's "Hakeset "(Rainbow) Choir performed at the end of