Community life

Reform’s Israel stance pleases ambassador

July 11, 2008

Israeli Ambassador Ron Prosor has praised the Movement for Reform Judaism for increasing the breadth of support for Israel among British Jewry.

Mr Prosor addressed the 260 delegates at the movement’s biennial conference in Leicester at the weekend, where newly elected Reform chair Stephen Moss reaffirmed its non-negotiable commitment to Israel — and to democracy, justice and human rights for all people of the Middle East.

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Jewish Care raises record £3.5m

July 4, 2008

Jewish Care fundraisers are celebrating a record £3.57 million pledged at the charity’s campaign dinner at  Grosvenor House on Tuesday.

The generosity of the 900 guests delighted campaign chairman Steven Lewis, who said that “in such financially challenging times, the community’s ability to understand the importance of what we do and offer their overwhelming support is truly outstanding”. The previous record was last year’s £2.9 million.

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US head sets out three-year vision

By Simon Rocker, July 4, 2008

United Synagogue president Simon Hochhauser has laid out his plans for the next three years in advance of his formal re-election for a second term on Monday week.

In a manifesto published this week, Dr Hochhauser and his new team promise to consult congregations with a view to “increased autonomy and responsibility” in running their affairs. They want to dispense with the two-tier constituent and affiliated status of member synagogues.

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Barnet rabbis get ‘free’ parking offer

By Jessica Elgot, July 4, 2008

A “pray and display” scheme to give religious leaders free parking when carrying out religious duties has been launched by Barnet Council.

Rabbis, along with other religious leaders, can apply for permits allowing them to park in a residents’ bay when on official business. However, the scheme is not entirely free as there is a £40 administration charge.

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Thieves targeting Charedim

By Jonathan Kalmus, July 4, 2008

A mobile police station is operating once again in the heart of Manchester’s Charedi community following a spate of violent attacks and muggings on religious Jews in Broughton Park. The station was open in Northumberland Street at the weekend and the intention is for it to be manned continuously over Shabbat.

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Legacy of 7/7 victim

By Candice Krieger, July 4, 2008

An eye-care centre in India was opened this week in memory of 7/7 bombings victim Miriam Hyman.

Based at the L V Prasad Eye Institute in Bhubaneswar, the Miriam Hyman Children’s Eye Care Centre will serve underprivileged youngsters. The £100,000-plus facility has been funded by the Miriam Hyman Memorial Trust, set up by the family of the North Londoner, who died in the 2005 blast at Tavistock Square, aged 32.

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Israelis enjoy a break from terror

By Jay Grenby, July 4, 2008

Young Israelis whose lives have been shattered as a result of terror attacks have been on a recuperative break in London.

The visitors, aged between 19 and 30, were brought to Britain under the auspices of One Family, whose UK executive director Andrew Alexander explained that such trips removed them from an environment of grief.

One of the youngest in the group is Hila Leibovitch, 21, whose seven-year-old sister Noam was killed in a highway ambush in 2003. Another sister, Neria, was seriously injured in the same attack.

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Auschwitz trips praised

By Jessica Elgot, July 4, 2008

Schools Minister Jim Knight highlighted the impact of a visit to Auschwitz when he addressed a Holocaust Educational Trust meeting on Tuesday at the Imperial War Museum.

Addressing sixth-formers who had participated in the HET’s government-backed Lessons from Auschwitz programme, Mr Knight said his own trip “was an experience I couldn’t have gotten from any film, any book, any website. Being there and seeing things is something that is irreplaceable.”

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Sarah Brown lauds leaders

By Jay Grenby, July 4, 2008

The Prime Minister’s wife, Sarah Brown, was at Edgware and District Reform Synagogue to present certificates to the 23 young graduates of its leadership programme.

“This is a shining example of a truly thriving community,” Mrs Brown told them. “You have worked so hard these past two years, and I am sure you understand the great responsibility and opportunity you now have to lead the way. You have the qualities to help nurture and inspire those around you.”

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Irish Chief Rabbi goes

By Alex Barnes, July 4, 2008
Dublin Hebrew Congregation held a farewell kiddush to Irish Chief Rabbi Yaakov Pearlman, who is returning to America with his wife Sheila after seven years in the post. Rabbi Pearlman thanked those in and beyond the community who had assisted him during his time in office.Tributes were paid to him by Howard Gross, a former president of the congregation, and Jewish Representative Council of Ireland chairman Leonard Abrahamson.

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