Rabbi Osher & Mrs. Rachel Krichevsky
New Mikva Address
Ulitsa Marshala Zhukova, 53, Omskaya oblast, Omsk,644024
Previously Closest Mikva
Novosibirsk, Russia; 7-Hour Train Ride
The first Jews arrived in Omsk about 170 years ago in the times of the Cantonists. Back then the Czar stole Jewish children from their families to serve in his army for 25 years, in the process converting them away from yiddishkeit. In an effort to bring them back, the community built the “Synagogue of the Soldiers” in 1864, which burned down in 1975 in a hellish fire.
Today about 15,000 Jews live in Omsk, making up a tiny fraction of the general population’s 1.5 million. Most of them are Jews from Ukraine who settled in Omsk during World War II. In 1990, formal Jewish life was renewed in the city with great vigor, and the community received the structure of the old synagogue from the authorities, which new serves as the main shul and community center.
While Omsk now has over 1,000 Jewish community members and a flourishing school, they reached out to Mikva Tahara for assistance to plan and build a kosher local mikva. Previously, Torah-true women had to choose between taking a 3-hour flight to Moscow or commit to a 7-hour train ride to Novosibirsk for a mikva. Mikva Tahara saw the wonderful opportunity to bring mikva closer to over 1,000 Jews, and the majestic mikva we built for them is now being used with pride and deep appreciation.