Communauté Israélite Libérale de Belgique
- Liberal Jewish Community of Belgium
- CILB Beth Hillel
The Liberal Jewish Community of Belgium was founded in 1965 by a group of friends from Anglo-Saxon countries, where this type Reformed Judaism open to persuasion was commonly practiced. The rabbis nominated the appointment of Rabbi Abraham (Albert) Dahan, engaged for more than four decades in this community. He organised a Sunday school and a program with specific courses. Also the first religious ceremonies took place: weddings, circumcisions, bar- and bat mitzvot. The growing community moved to new premises in 1976 and acquired a warehouse located on the Avenue Kersbeek. The synagogue was inaugurated in 1979. At the same time a training school of Judaism (Talmud Torah) was set up, hosting dozens of children and adults.
Beth Hillel initially had a strained relationship with and was not recognised by consistorial religious authorities. One of the main objects of controversy being the non-recognition of the Jewishness of some members of Beth Hillel, resulting in the refusal to bury certain Beth Hillel members in the plots of the two Jewish cemeteries. The CA of Beth Hillel therefore acquired a concession in the cemetery of Kraainem, Gan Hashalom, for an independent plot to bury its members. Today, the Liberal Jewish Community of Belgium is represented in a large number of Jewish institutions in the country.
Beth Hillel is legally recognised as a religious institution (Fabrique d’Eglise), which allows to receive operating subsidies and public financial contributions. These subsidies, in addition to the generosity of members and friends, allowed it to build a new building located 80 rue des Primeurs, which opened in September 2005.
Open only by appointment
Communauté Israélite Libérale de Belgique website consulted on 24/07/2019
Pierre-Alain Tallier (dir.), Gertjan Desmet & Pascale Falek-Alhadeff, Sources pour l'histoire des populations juives et du judaïsme en Belgique/Bronnen voor de geschiedenis van de Joden en het Jodendom in België, 19de-21ste eeuw, Brussel, ARA-AGR/Avant-Propos, 2016, 1,328 p.