Breakaway group finds Southern comfort

By Cathy Forman, October 8, 2009

The breakaway group from Bournemouth Reform Synagogue has given itself a title — the Southern Reform Community.

Over 80 people supported the group’s Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur services at the local Carrington Hotel. “The atmosphere was amazing,” reported former Bournemouth Reform officer Melanie Smith. “Many agreed it was the best set of High Holy-Day services they had attended for years.”

Having held a meeting to discuss the way forward, the group is organising a programme of monthly services for Shabbat. It also plans a Chanucah party and to fundraise for a Torah scroll. A website is under construction.

“It is early days,” Mrs Smith stressed. “We want to decide where we are going, but a formal approach may well be made to the Reform movement early next year to consider affiliation.”

Another SRC organiser, Jeffrey Sheaf, described the breakaway group as a “loose connection of like-minded people. We are running community-led services that we hope to build on.”

Last updated: 11:32am, October 8 2009