Emmanuel Mendel Tartakover was born in Brody, Galicia, in 1810. He became a believer in Yeshua in England in 1838. He lived at the Operative Jewish Converts Institute in Palestine Place, London. He then trained at the Hebrew Missionary College in Bethnal Green in 1840. He was spoken of as “the most hopeful student in that institution”. In 1842 he went to join Bishop Solomon Alexander in Jerusalem, where he was ordained Deacon on October 30th, and made a Priest on June 10 1843. He had problems with his eyesight, and needed to undertake further studies.
On October 30, 1842, a Mr. Tartakover, one of the London Society’s Missionaries, and a Mr. Whitmarsh, naval instructor on board Her Majesty’s Ship Vernon, were admitted to Deacons orders at Jerusalem. Their general ignorance, and the special incapacity of the former, were pointed out to the Bishop, who replied that ‘the deficient answers would only make it more necessary for the candidates to occupy themselves with study before they applied for Priest’s orders; which would not be granted until they had passed a year in the diaconate.’ After Mr. Tartakover’s ordination he was attacked with ophthalmia, and reduced to nearly total blindness by its severity, until, incapacitated for study, he was removed to Konigsburg in June, 1843; having been ordained Priest on June 10, on the Sunday previous to his departure.
Tarkatover went on to serve in Beirut, Konigsberg and Danzig, and retired after 34 years of active service in 1862. He died on August 15 1862.
Thank you for the life and service of Emmanuel Mendel, a faithful servant and diligent worker. May we follow in the footsteps of those of previous generations who gave the little they had to serve you and witness to the good news of the Messiah. Help us to appreciate the challenges they faced in pioneering new fields, studying to show themselves approved, and living a life of faith with character, integrity and spiritual passion. In our Messiah, Amen.
Turning to the Baltic Provinces, we find that the Rev. E. M. Tartakover was stationed at Konigsberg and the Rev. C. Noesgen at Danzig during this Period. Stettin also had a resident missionary, Mr. C. G. Petri, from 1843 to 1853, and likewise Oleczko. When the missionaries were banished from Poland in 1855, Mr. T. W. Goldinger was sent to Oleczko, where he remained till 1858. It was hoped that it might be a favourable station for
Visiting once again the Baltic Provinces we come to 1874] BALTIC PROVINCES 351 Konigsberg, where the Rev. E. M. Tartakover was in charge when this Period opened, but retired from active service in 1862. He was a faithful and diligent missionary, and was instrumental in leading many Jews to baptism in the Church of Christ. During the last few years of his labours he was assisted by T. W. Goldinger (from 1858 to 1861), and by the Rev. G. H. Handler (in 1861), who succeeded to the charge of the mission from January 1863, and remained there till 1869, when he was followed by Mr. J. Skolkowski.
Many missionaries of the Society passed away during this decade, and their deaths are recorded under their respective stations. Of the veteran missionaries no longer in active service, the Rev. David Albert Hefter died in 1896 at the age of 77 years. . He entered the Society s service, and was attached to the Jerusalem Mission, being ordained by Bishop Gobat. He was stationed at Pesth in 1862, Memel in 1864, Posen in 1869, and Frankfort in 1872, where he remained till 1887, when failing health compelled him to retire, after a laborious and active ministry amongst his brethren. In 1896 also died the Rev. Emmanuel Mendel Tartakover, another Galician Jew. Baptized in 1838, he entered the Hebrew Missionary College in 1840, having previously been an inmate of the Operative Jewish Converts Institution. He was ordained in Jerusalem, and laboured principally at Konigsberg and Danzig, retiring from active service thirty-four years previously, in 1862.