Home / Communities / Jewish Community of Saint-Gilles/Sint-Gillis

There has been an active Jewish Community in Saint-Gilles/Sint-Gillis since the 1930s.  However, this community did not expand until after World War II, with the return of some Holocaust survivors to the area and, above all, the influx of a relatively large number of members of the city’s Jewish community to this municipality (now a borough of Brussels) on the higher ground above central Brussels.

After acquiring a property in Rue de Thy/Thystraat in 1969 to house its synagogue, the Jewish Community of Saint-Gilles/Sint-Gillis was officially recognized by the Royal Decree of December 30, 1971.  Recently, in the wake of political events in the Middle East and the many anti-Semitic incidents linked to this strife that have hit the Jewish community in Europe in general and our country in particular, the synagogue had to be moved for security reasons.  Rue de Thy is effectively located in a neighborhood with a large Muslim majority that is constantly solicited by anti-Semitic propaganda spread by a few of its members who have doubtless been lured by the sirens of virulent Muslim fundamentalism and strayed from moderate traditional Islam.  The synagogue has thus moved and is now located at 115-117 Avenue du Roi, which is a slightly more welcoming location.  Services continue to be held in the synagogue all year long, on every shabbat and Jewish holy days.  The Community also holds cultural activities Monday and Wednesday evenings, including the study of Biblical commentaries and question-and-answer sessions.