Source: Israelitische Kultusgemeinde Wien
On Monday, June 3, 2013, the Governor of Vienna Michael Häupl awarded Chief Rabbi of the Israelitische Kultusgemeinde Wien (Jewish Community Vienna) Professor Paul Chaim Eisenberg with the Grand Decoration of Honor in Gold for services to the Province of Vienna. Many officials of the city government of Vienna as well as high level representatives of the Jewish community participated in the ceremony.
Governor Michael Häupl acknowledged Chief Rabbi Eisenberg as a very humorous person, who loves to tell Jewish jokes. “Laughter is a sign of tolerance and openness,” Häupl cited Eisenberg. Over the past few years, many projects had been organized by the city of Vienna together with its Jewish citizens. Häupl emphasized that any sign of intolerance had to be opposed vehemently.
Referring to Governor Häupl’s speech, Chief Rabbi Eisenberg declared that being a rabbi was a serious job. The relationship between the Jewish community and the city of Vienna had especially improved under Mayors Helmut Zilk and Michael Häupl. Finally, Eisenberg thanked the city of Vienna for the realization of joint projects.
About Rabbi Eisenberg
Professor Paul Chaim Eisenberg was born in Vienna in 1950. He comes from an important family of rabbis. His father already served as the chief rabbi of the Israelitische Kultusgemeinde Wien. After high school, Rabbi Eisenberg studied at the University of Vienna completing a degree in Math and Statistics. From 1973 until 1978, he pursued rabbinical studies in Jerusalem. In 1978, he was appointed rabbi and in 1983, after the death of his father, he took over the role as chief rabbi of Vienna. In 1988, he was appointed chief rabbi of the federal association of the Austrian Jewish communities. In his function as spiritual head of the Jewish citizens of Austria he is a constant supporter of the dialogue with representatives of the Catholic Church and the Islamic community. He is the author of many articles in Jewish and theological journals. Apart from serving as chief rabbi, he frequently performs as a singer, i.e. during the annual KlezMore-Festival and the cantor’s concert in Vienna.