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A Once-in-a-Generation Moment, A Generation Ago
Dedication of Milton Steinberg House
September 19, 1954

From one generation to the next, education remains a central goal of Park Avenue Synagogue. On October 15, 2017, at the dedication of the Eli M. Black Lifelong Learning Center, Rabbi Cosgrove noted that the building “reinforces the importance of education. If we want a loyal community, we need a learned community.” Sixty-three years ago, Jewish education was also the focus during the dedication ceremonies for the Milton Steinberg House – constructed for the “educational, cultural and social activities of the congregation” and as a memorial to Rabbi Steinberg, who passed away in March 1950. Cantor David Putterman, who came to PAS at the same time as Rabbi Steinberg, in 1933, and served until his retirement in 1976, wrote in the September 1954 bulletin:

“May [Rabbi Steinberg’s] love of God, Torah, Israel and the Jewish people long permeate every nook and corner of the new building dedicated to his blessed memory. May all who pass its threshold become imbued and inspired with a fervent passion and zeal for knowledge, faith, love and understanding as exemplified by Rabbi Steinberg in his search for goodness, beauty and truth.
Rabbi Simon Noveck spoke at the dedication about lighting the eternal flame in the newly constructed chapel. “It will be not merely the flame of learning and of faith, but it will be the flame of the immortality of influence of Milton Steinberg . . .”

The Honorable Robert F. Wagner, Mayor of the City of New York, said in his remarks, "How fitting in the year 1954 with the world torn by dissention and facing unprecedented problems, we in America here in the of City of New York can continue to devote ourselves to education and culture . . . to withstand the attack that is being made among democracy, spirituality and liberty the world over."

A highlight of the dedication was the unveiling of the façade of the Milton Steinberg House, featuring the unique five-story stained glass curtain wall designed by the abstract expressionist artist Adolph Gottlieb, who addressed members of the community at a lecture following the dedication.

Click here to view the dedication program booklet


Please enjoy this remarkable piece of PAS history, and write us at shapiroarchive@pasyn.org to tell us your thoughts about the archive.

posted June, 2017