Community life

Liberal Judaism's new haggadah

By Simon Rocker, March 25, 2010

Liberal Judaism has published a new haggadah, its first revision for nearly 30 years.

Co-edited by Rabbi Pete Tobias of the Liberal Synagogue Elstree and Rabbi Aaron Goldstein of Northwood and Pinner Liberal Synagogue, it continues the trend towards greater traditionalism with more biblical and rabbinic material than its 1981 predecessor.

Among innovative features are references to contemporary forms of slavery such as children's sweatshops and the trafficking of women for the sex trade.


Jewish Child's Day donors thanked

March 25, 2010

Major Jewish Child's Day donors were told about the good their money was doing at a reception in central London.

JCD chair Joy Moss said that thanks to their support, the charity had progressed from an annual collection to a year-round operation awarding £350,000 in grants to Jewish children in need.

Executive director Daniel Burger outlined new initiatives, including a leadership programme culminating in a visit to a JCD project in Turkey.


Matzah is back at 29p at Tesco

By Robyn Rosen, March 25, 2010

Tesco has restored its lowest priced matzah to 29p a box after briefly raising the price to 59p. It has pledged to keep the Israeli matzah at 29p until the end of Pesach.

A spokesman explained: "We work hard to keep prices down for customers across the store and prices do change from time to time."

Kosher store bosses have accused Tesco of taking their custom through loss-leading offers.


Belmont rabbi moves to smaller Hendon synagogue

By James Martin, March 25, 2010

Rabbi Daniel Roselaar is leaving the 600-family Belmont Synagogue to take up a part-time position with the 200-strong Alei Tzion congregation in Hendon.

Alei Tzion members approved the appointment at an EGM on Sunday after Rabbi Roselaar and his wife Na'amah met the community over Shabbat, with the rabbi giving an address during the morning service.

"Delight" at the appointment was expressed by Nathan Woodward, co-chair of Alei Tzion, which is based at the London School of Jewish Studies and describes itself as a "vibrant modern Orthodox Zionist kehillah.


Israeli ambassador praises Jewish university students

March 25, 2010

Israeli Ambassador Ron Prosor has praised Jewish students for their support in the face of anti-Israel campaigns on campus.

The envoy addressed 200 students from across the UK at a Friday night dinner at Finchley Synagogue hosted by Tribe, University Jewish Chaplaincy and UJS.

Mr Prosor said they were "on the front-line" and acknowledged their commitment to Israel at a difficult time.


Reform rabbis enter £100k salary bracket

By Simon Rocker, March 25, 2010

The top recommended salary for Reform rabbis has risen above £100,000 a year for the first time.

Guidelines published by the Reform movement this week propose an increase to £100,548 from £96,960 in 2008. A pay freeze was recommended last year because of the economic climate.

Full-time rabbis on the lowest point of the scale should see a rise from £36,023 to £37,356.

The movement divides rabbis into six groups depending on factors such as size of congregation and uses a 51-point scale system taking into account responsibilities and length of service.


Borehamwood girl, 5, dies

By Cathy Forman, March 25, 2010

The funeral of a five-year-old Borehamwood girl who died suddenly last week was held at Bushey cemetery on Wednesday. Earlier in the day, Hertfordshire Coroners office opened and adjourned an inquest into the death of Hanna Collins.

Former Borehamwood and Elstree Synagogue minister Rabbi Alan Plancey, who officiated at the funeral, said Hanna's parents, Claudia and Andrew, were "devastated. They are a loving and caring couple. We have to give them every support we can."

Hanna also had a twin and an elder sister.


Year-old butter sold for Pesach

By Leon Symons, March 25, 2010

Environmental health officers in Barnet have launched an investigation into the sale of Pesach butter almost a year beyond its "best before" date in a number of north-west London shops.

The Lurpak brand butter carries a white sticker with the date "20-05-10" next to the London Beth Din imprint. However, if the label is peeled back, it reveals a "best before" date of May 27, 2009. Lurpak has not produced any butter for Pesach this year.

A printed label on the side of the pack describes the sole agency for the UK as a Wembley company, S Schwartz Ltd.


Hertsmere's new headteacher Steven Isaacs

March 18, 2010

Steven Isaacs has been appointed as the new head of Hertsmere Jewish Primary School and will take up the post in September.

Mr Isaacs, currently deputy head of the Menorah Foundation School in north London, replaces Michele Bazak, who is retiring.

HJPS governors' chair Maralyn Zucker said he had impressed the selection panel with his "enthusiasm for education, ideas and vision, coupled with his engaging personality".