Community life

Board hailed for standing up to hatred

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 23, 2008

Combating antisemitism is the model for stamping out hatred in Britain and forging inter-communal cohesion, two leading Merseyside politicians told Sunday’s Board of Deputies meeting at Liverpool’s town hall.

Praising the Board for its work with the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Antisemitism, Riverside Labour MP Louise Ellman said that anti-Jewish sentiment and the electoral advances of the BNP were issues that resonated beyond national borders.

The Board, she declared, was “standing up for all people to take a positive stand against hate”.


Rabbi designs the 'first Jewish tartan'

May 23, 2008

Glasgow Shul in the Park minister Rabbi Mendel Jacobs claims to have created the world’s first Jewish tartan.

Having consulted religious leaders and the Scottish Tartans’ Authority, Rabbi Jacobs set out to design a tartan which would reflect Scotland’s Jewish history. “As a Scottish-born rabbi, I felt it important to celebrate the rich tapestry of culture and history we share. Jews have been an integral part of Scottish culture for more than 300 years, with the first Jew recorded in Edinburgh in 1691.”

Demo in Dublin, VIP guest in Wales

May 16, 2008

Ireland’s Israeli Ambassador Zion Evrony told the 150 guests at a celebratory reception in Dublin that despite Israel’s impressive achievements, what it wanted most was peace with its neighbours. However, the difficulties entailed were illustrated by a group of Palestinian supporters who heckled participants as they arrived at the venue. Welsh First Minister Rhodri Morgan was among the 350 guests at the Israel 60 celebrations at Cardiff’s City Hall.


Birthday parties draw the crowds

By Jay Grenby, May 16, 2008

American rock band Blue Fringe hit the right note for 250 revellers at Stanmore Synagogue’s Israel 60th birthday bash, The group of four twentysomethings, who met at Yeshiva University in 2001, played a Jewish-themed set of pop, rock, funk and R&B to a predominantly youthful audience.


Party plans on ice as youngsters are the focus in Manchester

By Jonathan Kalmus, May 16, 2008

Children and Jewish unity were at the heart of Manchester’s Israel at 60 celebrations, which saw a 1,200-strong crowd fill the Sheridan Suite in the north-west of the city last Thursday.

For the kids, there was indoor ice skating, giant inflatable assault courses and interactive stalls, with around 150 volunteers from community organisations and youth movements helping them to get the most from their day. For the rest, Israeli band Kol Chai and singer Danny Bergson played Israeli and Jewish music throughout the evening and there were separate dancing areas for men and women.


Glasgow guests enjoy passport privileges

By Lindy Markson, May 16, 2008

The 700 arrivals at Glasgow’s Israel at 60 party at Eastwood Park, Giffnock, received “passports” to enter a mock-up of Ben Gurion airport lounge and then an Israeli market place. Their target was to win prizes by collecting stamps for activities including making kites, jewellery and key rings and decorating a cookie.

Other popular pursuits were face painting and a quiz challenge from JLGB.


Movements are united in thanksgiving

By Simon Rocker, May 16, 2008

British Jewry’s celebrations of Israel’s 60th anniversary entered a second week with a service of thanksgiving in London on Sunday hosted by five Reform, Liberal and Masorti congregations.

The venue was the Liberal Jewish Synagogue, St John’s Wood, whose walls of Jerusalem stone were a concrete sign of the links that have grown between the once anti-Zionist Liberals and the Jewish state.

LJS came together with the West London, Belsize Square, Westminster and New London synagogues to sponsor the event, along with the Reform and Liberal movements.


Youth group to offset Israel flight emissions

May 16, 2008

Liberal youth movement LJY-Netzer is advancing its green credentials by asking members to offset carbon emissions on overseas trips by planting trees in Israel.

In partnership with JNF, LJY-Netzer on Tuesday launched Fly Green as part of its ongoing commitment to tikkun olam (repairing the world).


'A different kind of rabbi' hailed by Chief

By Jay Grenby, May 16, 2008

Edgware Synagogue’s new minister is “a very different kind of rabbi”, Sir Jonathan Sacks told a 600-strong congregation on Sunday.

Addressing the induction service for Rabbi David Lister, the Chief Rabbi remarked that there were few ministers who could claim to be “adept on the violin and guitar, versed in French literature, astronomy and quantum physics, as well as author of a forthcoming book entitled Inter-Galactic Judaism, or whose induction sermon for his former Muswell Hill congregation had embraced an ode to a Harley-Davidson motorbike.”


Miriam walks tall for Norwood

May 16, 2008

An 11-year-old Southgate girl became the youngest participant in the five-year history of Norwood’s Waterside Walk when she completed 10 miles in Sunday’s fundraiser, which took in some spectacular scenery in Berkshire and Surrey.