When Yehuda Yaakov, Israel’s consul general to New England, visited a Wellesley temple on Rosh Hashana, the rabbi invited everyone who had been to Israel in the last year to come up to the Torah for a blessing.
Dozens of people made their way to the front of the sanctuary.
“A man behind me quipped that only a minority remained sitting,” Yaakov recalled.
A newly released study found that two-thirds of Jewish adults in Boston — and about three-quarters of those ages 18 to 34 — have been to Israel at least once. That is a dramatic increase in the last 10 years, and far outstrips the rest of the country.
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Jewish leaders, in interviews, pointed to an array of factors explaining the high rate of local travel to Israel, including a program that has sent some 23,000 local Jews to the nation, the attraction of Israel’s burgeoning high-tech sector, and increased study opportunities.