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CHERNOVTSY, Ukraine Joining the growing tendency across the Former Soviet Union for Jews to have Brit Mila ceremonies, several members of the Jewish community in the Ukrainian city of Chernovtsy have just undergone their own ritual circumcision. Having occurred this week, the opportunity to partake in this important happening was arranged by Rabbi Menachem Mendel Glitzenshtein, the Chief Rabbi of the region and a Chabad Lubavitch emissary.

The Mohel, Rabbi Yaron Amit, who is the Chairman of the 'Brit Yosef Yitzchak' Organization, travelled here all the way from Israel in order to carry out these circumcisions for three local Jews. Two of them are young men, both 20 years old and active members in the community's Youth Club, which is supported by the Ohr Avner Foundation. The third participant is a small boy, just two and a half years old, who attends the recently-launched 'Ohr Avner Chabad' Daycare Center.

Once the operation was completed, each of the three Jews adopted their new names: Aaron Igal, Chayim Zeev and Israel. A communal festivity involving their families and other community members followed.

The Jewish community of Chernovtsy is a member of the Federation of Jewish Communities of Ukraine. In strategic partnership with the 'Brit Yosef Yitzhak' Organization, the Federation of Jewish Communities of the CIS is working to encourage Jews of the Former Soviet Union to enter into the Covenant of Abraham by having a Brit. To this end, the FJC supports two full-time certified mohels and a permanent brit center in Moscow.