Memorial site of the Rexingen synagogue

Synagogue on the hill (today).
Synagogue on the hill (today).

In Rexingen one finds the unusual situation of the dual use of a former synagogue both as memorial site and church. In 1945, after the extinction of the Jewish community by the Nazis, there was no clear concept for the use of the ruined interior of the building. In 1952 it was handed over to the newly-formed Protestant community who altered it to suit their purposes. In 1997 citizens founded the Association of Patrons and Friends of the Former Rexingen Synagogue to ensure the maintenance and restoration of the building and to research and document the Jewish history of the village.

After 40 years of use as a Protestant church a thorough renovation of the building became imperative. With the incorporation of Rexingen into the town of Horb the latter became owner of the building in 1971. The town was not willing to assume the high costs required for renovation within any foreseeable time. The costs were also too high for the Protestant community as tenant.

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During the renovation of the interior in 2003 old decorations were uncovered.

In this situation the Association of Patrons and Friends of the Former Rexingen Synagogue was founded on the initiative of the then Vicar Dr. Albrecht Haizmann and with the support of the newly elected Mayor Michael Theurer.

The town of Horb offered the tenancy of the building to the Association free of charge. In return the Association gave the assurance that it would assume the task of restoration and maintenance.

In 2003, thanks to the voluntary commitment of its members, the Association was able to conclude the basic stabilization of the building and the interior renovation of the room on the upper floor used for religious services.

In 2010, the roof was given a new lining and was then covered anew with old handmade tiles.

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The roof was covered anew with old handmade tiles in 2010.

The next phase of refurbishing will tackle the renovation of the exterior of the former synagogue. The building was erected on a foundation of stilts which is slowly sinking. Measures will be taken to secure the foundation and stop this development. The plasterwork of the building has to be renewed. In addition, a new layout for the space in front of the synagogue is planned.