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Abridged Prayer Book for Jews in the Armed Forces of the United States (National Jewish Welfare Board 1941)

https://opensiddur.org/?p=41852 Abridged Prayer Book for Jews in the Armed Forces of the United States (National Jewish Welfare Board 1941) 2022-01-16 01:30:51 An abridged siddur prepared for use of Jewish military personnel serving in the armed forces of the United States in advance of World War II, and printed by the Jewish Publication Society. Text the Open Siddur Project Aharon N. Varady (digital imaging and document preparation) Aharon N. Varady (digital imaging and document preparation) Eugene Kohn David de Sola Pool Solomon B. Freehof the National Jewish Welfare Board https://opensiddur.org/copyright-policy/ Aharon N. Varady (digital imaging and document preparation) https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/105 Comprehensive (Kol Bo) Siddurim American Jewry of the United States 20th century C.E. military 58th century A.M. World War Ⅱ

This work was scanned by Aharon Varady for the Open Siddur Project from a volume held in the collection of the HUC Klau Library, Cincinnati, Ohio. (Thank you!) This work is cross-posted to the Internet Archive, as a repository for our transcription efforts.

This work is in the Public Domain due to the lack of a copyright renewal by the copyright holder listed in the copyright notice (a condition required for works published in the United States between January 1st 1924 and January 1st 1964).


May this prayer book, small enough in size to be carried in a pocket over the heart, bear the spiritual message of Israel’s ancient prayers to the heart of the American Jewish soldiers and sailors serving their country. The prayers here gathered together speak of the eternal aspirations of the Jewish people, and, indeed, of all mankind. They lift the soul above the immediate cares and interests of the daily round to the sphere of tenderness, purity and faith that is divine. They link those far from home with some of the most beautiful and uplifting associations of family life. They quicken loyalty to loved ones and to all one’s fellow men. They strengthen against temptation and give courage to spurn evil and hold fast to faith in the ultimate triumph of the good. In furthering this high purpose, this little volume of devotion serves not only the men who use it, but also the highest ideal of America.

This abridged prayer book is necessarily incomplete, especially in the services for the festivals, and for the New Year and the Day of Atonement. Including only the essence of the principal Jewish services of prayer, it is designed to be used where the exigencies of life in the army or the navy do not permit attendance at regular synagogue services with their incomparable richness of spiritual inspiration.

May this manual of prayer, which from the hallowed ideals of the past draws religious inspiration for the present, help towards achieving a future of peace and human brotherhood under the Father of all mankind.


The Jewish Welfare Board makes grateful acknowledgment to the Jewish Publication Society for permission to use its text of most of the Biblical passages, and to the Central Conference of American Rabbis for the Friday evening service from the Union Prayer Book, as well as for the hymns and prayers taken, as indicated in the text, from the Union Hymnal and from “Blessing and Praise”. It has also drawn on prayer books edited by Simeon Singer, Hermann Adler, David de Sola Pool and others, and the Prayer Book for Jewish Soldiers and Sailors compiled for men in the British Army and Navy. Finally it records its debt to the original editors, Dr. Cyrus Adler, Dr. Bernard Drachman and Dr. William Rosenau, representing respectively conservative, orthodox, and reform Judaism, who in 1917 prepared the Abridged Prayer Book for Jewish men in the American forces serving in the World War, and to Dr. Solomon B. Freehof, Rabbi Eugene Kohn and Dr. David de Sola Pool, who have prepared this revised edition.




2 comments to Abridged Prayer Book for Jews in the Armed Forces of the United States (National Jewish Welfare Board 1941)

  • Avatar Marla Fogelman

    Was there a JWB prayer book issued between 1958 and 1986?

    • Between the siddurim published by the Jewish Welfare Board in 1958 and in 1984, I know only of a single high holiday prayerbook published in 1969. We’ve only ever held copies of the small pocketbook paperback printing. Imaging the pages was too difficult due to the lack of a gutter margin. If a larger hard cover one was ever printed, I’d like to see it.

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