When the time came to bring out the sacred Torah scrolls, the congregantsat the Jewish Center of Kew Gardens got a surprise that literally stopped the services. The scrolls were missing.
Bernie Newman, honorary president of the Jewish Center of Kew Gardens Hills, said eight scrolls of Hebrew Scriptures, covered in ornate silver and gold, had disappeared from the ark.
They are worth 500 thousand dollars, but are priceless to the Jewish Center.
They are kept under lock and key and have an alarm system.
Police say there is no sign of forced entry, and the theft may have been an inside job.
A number of the congregants are Holocaust survivors, and the Torahs are dedicated to their families.