Feng shui your shul for a more spiritual service

By Simon Rocker, December 28, 2015

Rabbi Kaya Stern-Kaufman is not happy with the orderly rows of chairs facing her before her session starts.

Instead, she suggests her audience come up with a better arrangement.

“Tune into yourselves,” she counsels.

“You do know that we are in England,” one of the participants remarks. “We like to follow orders.”


East End synagogue is sold to its Muslim neighbours

By Simon Rocker, November 19, 2015

The sale of an old East End synagogue to a neighbouring mosque has been hailed as an example of positive relations between Jews and Muslims.

Fieldgate Street Great Synagogue, which shut earlier this year, has been bought by the adjacent East London Mosque, the largest in the country.

Judge Khurshid Drabu, a trustee of the Joseph Interfaith Foundation, noted that the synagogue had given their


Developer fuels shul relocation

By Naomi Firsht, November 12, 2015

A petrol station could be demolished to make way for a synagogue for a strictly Orthodox Manchester congregation. Shomrei Hadass hopes to move into part of a new development proposed for a Texaco garage site in Prestwich.


Highgate rebuilds for growing congregation

November 12, 2015

Highgate Synagogue is being rebuilt in a £2 million-plus project to provide modern, environmentally friendly premises for a membership that has almost tripled to 400 over the past three decades.


From Florida to Leeds

October 29, 2015

Florida-based Rabbi Janie Grackin was a guest at Sinai Synagogue where she spoke at the shul's monthly Chavurah supper. She introduced the concept of intergenerational services, talking about "lowering the barriers, without lowering the bar". The Shabbat service included her teaching songs and storytelling for the congregation - from toddlers to pensioners.


Edinburgh shul hosts Lord Hope

October 13, 2015

Edinburgh Hebrew Congregation welcomed Lord Hope of Craighead, who was on his first visit to a synagogue. Lord and Lady Hope were hosted by Rabbi David Rose, shul members and from Glasgow, Rabbi Moshe Rubin of Giffnock and Newlands Hebrew Congregation,andScottish Council of Jewish Communities' Ephraim Borowski and Nicola Livingston.


It's getting better for heritage shuls

By Naomi Firsht, September 21, 2015

Historic synagogues are in better shape than was the case five years ago, a Jewish Heritage report has found.


On the menu in Leeds

June 11, 2015

Sinai Synagogue Leeds Judaism through Cooking programme got off to a tempting start with Carey Glass demonstrating how to cook blintzes and director of education Gwynneth Lewis teaching about Shavuot. Participant Petra Mullen said: "It was fabulous to make something new with a lovely collection of people. Carey’s cooking and Gwynneth’s information complemented each other perfectly.


Jeffrey Spector right to take his own life says member of his shul

By Naomi Firsht, May 26, 2015

Jeffrey Spector, the advertising executive who killed himself by assisted suicide at a clinic in Switzerland, was a member of St Annes Hebrew Congregation in Lancashire.

Synagogue member June Kendall said the Spector family were members of the Orthodox shul.

Mr Spector, who was 54, took a lethal dose of poison at Dignitas clinic in Zurich.


Students' capital home-from-home

By Naomi Firsht, May 7, 2015

Jewish students often look to Hillels or Jewish halls of residence to provide a home-from-home experience while at university. Yet in London, hub of the UK community, there are none serving the estimated 2,000 Jewish students.