Des Moines soon to be without Orthodox Jewish synagogue - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Des Moines soon to be without Orthodox Jewish synagogue

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(AP) -

For the first time in well over a century, the Des Moines is about to be without an Orthodox Jewish synagogue.

The Des Moines Register reports (http://dmreg.co/2ht2zLl ) that the Beth El Jacob congregation is selling its 32,000-square-foot building on the west side of Des Moines. Once the sale is final, the Orthodox congregation plans to move into vacant space at the city's Reform synagogue, Temple B'Nai Jeshurun, which belongs to the most liberal major branch of Judaism.

The Orthodox synagogue's leaders blamed the sale on dwindling congregation numbers.

Beth El Jacob is part of a more mainstream branch of Judaism known as Modern Orthodox. Once Beth El Jacob closes, the nearest such synagogues will be in Minneapolis, Omaha, Nebraska, and Kansas City, Missouri.

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