2006_1_templecollapse.jpg

Late this afternoon we started getting text messages about a building collapse on Rivington near Orchard Street. Turns out it was the interior of the First Roumanian American Synagogue, just up from THOR. For those who missed the chaos, check out this set from Lawrence on Flickr. Here's some info about the temple:

First Roumanian-American Congregation (89 Rivington, between Orchard and Ludlow Streets). Built as a church in 1857 and home to successive religious groups (both Jewish and missionary Christian), the building was acquired in 1902 by Shaarey Shamoyim, the First-Roumanian American congregation. Yossele Rosenblatt, Moishe Oysher and Jacob Pincus Perelmuth (Jan Peerce) were among those who sang at this synagogue, once recognized as a cantorial center. The "Rumanische shul" conducts daily, Sabbath and holiday services.

Related: Village article from 2004 on the synagogue (includes an interior shot.)