Synagogues in Bosnia will be empty during Passover for the first time since World War II, due to the coronavirus crisis.
“We have decided to organise the prayer and the Passover Seder via Youtube. Our Hazan, Igor Kozemjakin, has prepared everything for this evening,” Eli Tauber, the Advisor for Culture and Religion to Bosnia’s Jewish Community, told the Fena news agency.
Tauber added he can only think of one time when synagogues were empty during one of the Jewish most important holidays – the WWII period.
Except for the few years of Bosnia’s Nazi occupation, Jews in the country have been celebrating the eight-day holiday for more than 450 years already, but this year they will mark it with their families at home and follow the religious service via Youtube.
Tauber also mentioned that other major religions in the country are, unfortunately, facing similar restrictions caused by the pandemic.
“This year Passover, just as other religious holidays (Easter, Orthodox Easter and Ramadan), came at a bad time,” he said.
“There are stories that speak of the fact that we have, even in the most difficult times, not forgotten our obligation to mark our most important holiday, remembering the Jews who managed to break free from slavery in Egypt and receive the Ten Commandments,” Tauber said.
“Those events defined Jews as one people with faith in one God,” he added.