Community extra

Nightingale residents tour of the East End.

December 3, 2009

As part of South London Liberal Synagogue’s outreach programme, shul chairman Philip Walker led a group of Nightingale residents on a tour of the Jewish East End.

The first stop was East London Central Synagogue where warden Leon Silver explained the history of his community. They then viewed Jewish landmarks in Stepney before taking lunch at the Stepney Jewish Day Centre.

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Tracy-Ann Oberman among speakers at seminar

December 3, 2009

Actress Tracy-Ann Oberman and comedy scriptwriter Ivor Baddiel were among the speakers at the Association of Jewish Women’s Organisations’ seminar: Away with Depression — Is Laughter the Best Medicine?

Agony aunt Virginia Ironside and consultant psychiatrist Professor Gill Livingston were also on the panel and the 100 guests were welcomed by AJWO chair Linda Carr.

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Chief Rabbi talks about Chanucah in 21st Century

December 3, 2009

Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks discussed the message of Chanucah in the 21st century when he delivered the annunal Harold Weinberg memorial lecture at Wanstead and Woodford Synagogue.

Lord Sacks also praised the shul’s minister, Rabbi Rabbi Beni Fleischer, and took questions from the 200-strong audience, including how best to encourage more people to come to synagogue. Tribute was paid to Mr Weinberg’s work for the community and his widow Ruth was among those present.

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My Community: Gillian Merron, MP

December 3, 2009

Gillian Merron, MP
Lincolnshire Jewish Community

Originally from Dagenham, Gillian Merron has been Lincoln’s Labour MP since 1997 and is currently a Health minister. Despite her busy political schedule, she finds time to run regularly and participates in the Lincoln 10k every year. She also enjoys watching Lincoln City FC home games. But her most rewarding pastime is attending services at the Lincolnshire Jewish Community, which has 55 members, 20 associates and 12 friends

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Wood work for the young

July 9, 2009

Joseph Machta and Dovid Benmayer are the new Borehamwood Synagogue youth directors and will start their job-share in September.

Both have been active in Jewish life on campus, served as cheder teachers, and have a youth work background through Bnei Akiva.

According to a member of the community’s youth management team: “We have a very extensive youth programme at Borehamwood and look forward to Joseph and Dovid bringing their passion and commitment to the creation of further exciting activities which will attract even greater numbers of young people.”

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Residents appreciate room to reminisce

July 9, 2009

Memories were plentiful when Clapham care home Nightingale organised its first reminiscence week for residents, a highlight of which was the reopening of Nightingale’s reminiscence room, decorated in 1940s’ and 50s’ style.

With nearly two-thirds of residents affected by dementia, reminiscence activities are an integral part of Nightingale life.

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Watford is big business

By Jay Grenby, July 9, 2009

Lubavitch rabbi Yaron Jacobs discussed the art of leadership to launch the Watford Jewish Business Club. Organiser Shimon Shaw was delighted with a turnout of almost 40, reporting “positive feedback. People connected very well and I saw lots of business cards passing from hand to hand.”

Although Watford might not seem an obvious location for Jewish business types, Mr Shaw is convinced the monthly “lunch and learn” sessions will draw support from larger communities such as Radlett, Bushey, Borehamwood and Edgware.

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West London rabbi hits the jackpot in Vegas

By James Martin, July 9, 2009

A London Reform minister believes his upcoming move to Las Vegas is no gamble, rather the “opportunity of a lifetime”.
Rabbi Malcolm Cohen, 35, is leaving the West London Synagogue to take up a post next month with the Temple Sinai congregation in Summerlin, 25 minutes by car from the centre of the world’s gaming capital.

“I got the offer in April and decided it was a fantastic opportunity to be able to develop a community there,” he said.

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Corrie star remembers Manchester campaigner

By Jonathan Kalmus, July 9, 2009

Coronation Street star Julie Hesmondhalgh was among friends and family who remembered a radical-left Manchester Jewish campaigner whose book spurred MP John Mann to chair the Parliamentary Committee against Antisemitism.

Steve Cohen, who died in March, described himself politically as a “dangerous Jew”. An immigration-law barrister from Prestwich, he set up the Greater Manchester Immigration Aid Unit, fighting legal battles for asylum seekers.

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Hebrew U scholar gets Oxford chair

July 9, 2009

A scholar of international renown has been appointed to a new chair at Oxford University for the study of Abrahamic religions.

Guy Stroumsa, the Martin Buber professor of comparative religion at Jerusalem’s Hebrew University, takes up the post in October and will be a Fellow of Lady Margaret Hall.

Professor Stroumsa stresses the importance of the comparative study of religions, “and in particular of the monotheistic religions, as contemporary problems demand intellectual attention on the religious and historical roots of our current predicaments.”

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