Like father, like son – shul votes to keep it in the family

Rabbi Eli and Rebbetzin Lauren Levin will be leading South Hampstead Synagogue


Rabbi Eli Levin, Rebbetzin Lauren Levin and their children (l-r) Hillel, Yitzchak, Rachel Emuna and Chani (Photo: Jeremy Coleman)

South Hampstead Synagogue’s congregation has welcomed the news that the son of their current senior rabbi will be taking the helm when his father retires.

Rabbi Eli and Rebbetzin Lauren Levin will be filling the shoes of Rabbi Eli’s parents, Rabbi Shlomo and Rebbetzin Lynndy Levin, who have served the north-west London community for some 40 years.

Rabbi Eli currently serves as rabbi and executive director of the synagogue, while Rebbetzin Lauren Levin is director of education and is also a yoetzet halachah, advising on Jewish practices connected to marriage, sexuality and women’s health.

Rabbi Eli and Rebbetzin Lauren said in a joint statement that since the shul’s founding 100 years ago, South Hampstead had been “driven by a passion to pass the baton – ‘l’dor vador’ –  from one generation to the next.

"The transformation from almost closing its doors, to the recent rebuild to create more space, says everything about the example of innovation that has been set for us. We feel a sense of responsibility to expand, God-willing, in a way that is relevant, energised and fulfilling.”

The Levins’ appointment comes following a wide-ranging community consultation, a unanimous vote by the shul council recommending the Levins, a presentation by Rabbi Eli and Rabbi Rebbetzin Lauren to the community, and then a vote, where 99.6 per cent of members were supportive.

Rabbi Shlomo and Rebbetzin Lynndy told the JC: “We are thrilled that the South Hampstead synagogue community has voted overwhelmingly for Rabbi Eli and Rebbetzin Lauren to be its next senior rabbi and rebbetzin. We wish them great success and are confident that under their inspired leadership, the community will go from strength to strength.” ‎

Danny Kay, chair of South Hampstead United Synagogue, said the congregation extended a “heartfelt Mazel Tov” to the newly elected rabbinic couple.

The historic vote, Kay said, marked the first community-wide vote ever taken at South Hampstead and highlighted “the unity and shared vision of our community”.

He added: “We also look forward to celebrating the remarkable legacy of Rabbi Shlomo and Rebbetzin Lynndy later this year, on the 40th anniversary of their tenure, to express our deepest gratitude for their service. Their influence will continue to guide us in the years to come.”

Rabbi and Rebbetzin Levin are expected to take up their new roles this winter, with Rabbi Shlomo and Rebbetzin Lynndy moving to emeritus roles within the community.

Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive