Mount Zion Temple

Mount Zion Temple

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Mount Zion Temple is a Reform synagogue located in St. Paul, Minnesota, United States. Founded in 1856 as Mount Zion Hebrew Association, it was the first Jewish congregation in Minnesota. The congregation was formed before the statehood of Minnesota in 1858.
Early on the congregation was divided by a group called Ahabath Ahim, which branched off then returned.1871 was the year Rabbi Leopold Wintner began as Mount Zion’s first and Minnesota’s first Rabbi. In 1871, the congregation built the first Synagogue in the state.The same year they founded the Hebrew Ladies Benevolent Society, members of which organized Neighborhood House to serve immigrants in the community. The Rabbis and congregants of Mount ZEmanuel Hess, who had been born in Meerholz, Germany in 1845, became rabbi in 1888.He had previously served as rabbi of Temple Israel of Columbus, Ohio in 1876–1877, and then Congregation B’nai Zion in Shreveport, Louisiana, where he served until 1888. Hess was rabbi of Mount Zion until his death in 1906.In the 1940s the congregation participated in recreations such as “The Jewish Home Beautiful” which shared traditions of daily life.In 1948, began the leadership of Rabbi Gunther Plaut, who published books on the congregation’s history and on the Jewish history of Minnesota. In the 1950s, the congregation chose architect Erich Mendelssohn to design a building for them. After projects in Europe, the Soviet Union, Israel and America – this was his final building, and it was completed after his death in 1953.The congregation moved into the current building in 1956, 100 years after it was first founded. It is located on Summit Avenue.