No commandment is repeated more often in the Hebrew Bible than the admonition to “welcome the stranger [for we were once strangers in the land of Egypt].” And no Baltimorean lived these instructions more fully than Inge Weinberg, who, sadly, passed away this past week. Inge, herself originally a “stranger” to Baltimore — from Germany by way of Bolivia, spent her life welcoming newcomers to the community. As head of HIAS Baltimore from the mid-1960s to 1990, she used her own experience as a stranger to welcome the stranger. In doing so, she helped make Baltimore the Jewishly diverse city that it is today — with significant Russian- and Pharsi-speaking Jewish communities. In the two decades since her retirement, she devoted her “leisure” time to once again help those who were not native born — assisting Holocaust survivors obtain the reparations to which they were entitled.
She was one of the righteous among us, and we honor her in death, as we did in life. May her blessed memory be perpetuated by the successfully integrated lives of all those strangers she welcomed.
President & CEO, HIAS
New York City