Muswell Hill Rabbi David Mason chose his induction speech at the synagogue on Sunday to reveal that he wanted to start work on an eruv for the north London community.
Chief Rabbi Sir Jonathan Sacks and Rosh (head) Beth Din Dayan Menachem Gelley looked on as Rabbi Mason told the congregation that the synagogue would continue to be “an attractive and inspiring option for young families who live in the area and who may be unaffiliated or considering joining synagogues of other bodies.
“We need to construct a vision for our community that is based on a vibrant Orthodox Jewish life. We need to compete by stressing how we are different, not by being the same as others around. We must look long and hard at what will allow and encourage a young Orthodox family to consider Muswell Hill community as their home. There is now a wonderful religious Orthodox school a few minutes drive away, the Morasha primary school in Finchley, where my daughter is a pupil. It will be state-aided within a few years.
“We need to move forward on constructing an eruv in Muswell Hill so that young families can be together with their children in synagogue on Shabbat. I will look forward to working with the London Beth Din and the United Synagogue to this end,” he said.
Chief Rabbi Sacks said: “It says a great deal for the relationship between this community and its rabbis that Rabbi Mason is only the fourth minister since 1955 and already he has made a fine impact.” He praised Rabbi Mason, saying he was “caring, kind and principled and a joy to work with”.
Currently, north-west London and Edgware have eruvs in place, with Borehamwood expected to be the next.