Rabbi Aharon Menachem Mendel & Mrs. Ester Cohen
New Mikva Address
6 Xharlampievskaya Street Mariupol, Ukraine 87515
Previously Closest Mikva
City records indicate that Jews first settled in Mariupol in 1820. Five large synagogues served as community centers, housing a matzah bakery, school, Jewish hospital, orphanage, and even kosher mikvas. When most local Jews were deported and killed under the Soviet regime, Mariupol’s synagogues were demolished and replaced by non-Jewish institutions.
During World War II, 16,000 local Jews died al kiddush hashem; most of them are buried in the nearby village of Baza. For 50+ years, the synagogues, mikvas, and community centers were shuttered and all religious activity banned.
In the early ‘90s, Mariupol’s Jewish community was reestablished. The government awarded them a portion of the old school building, and Jews began gathering for minyan, Torah study, and holidays. Activists from the US and Israel even flew in to help organize yom tov prayers.
Mikva remained a challenge, however. The nearest one was in Donetsk, which meant a 7-hour drive across dangerous, insurgent-occupied territory. When Mikvah Tahara sprang into action to help build a beautiful new mikva, an outpouring of appreciation and commitment ensued. The new mikva is now complete in all its glory, and young families are blossoming in accordance with purity and Torah law.