North London Reform shul appoints new minister


Sha’arei Tsedek North London Reform Synagogue will have a new principal minister for 2018 with the appointment of Rabbi Shulamit Ambalu.

She currently serves the Kehillah North London, having previously worked at Milton Keynes Reform Synagogue and as director of youth, education and development at Finchley Reform.

Ordained in 2004, she studied for the ministry after a career in the NHS as a speech and language therapist. Her first class at Leo Baeck College was classical Hebrew with Rabbi Colin Eimer, now Sha’arei Tsedek’s emeritus minister.

She looked forward to “bringing my leadership and vision to this wonderful synagogue, working closely with members, leaders and colleagues to develop the community, the many spiritual and educational opportunities it offers, as well as Sha’arei Tsedek’s role in the wider world”. 

Richard Woolf, the shul chair, said the appointment would “give our community the spiritual leadership and vision we need to move forward and build on the legacy of Rabbi Eimer”.

In recent years, the Whetstone-based synagogue has experienced a steady growth in membership, particularly families with young children and mixed faith couples.

“We are seeing a steady stream of new members coming through each month and are now running at about 460 family units [accounting for some 900 individuals],” Mr Woolf added.

“The other growth area we are seeing is in our Friends scheme, which enables non-Jewish partners of members to become part of the community.

“It has become more attractive with the introduction of Friends Plus, which also offers mixed faith funerals in the Jewish Joint Burial Society’s new woodland cemetery at Cheshunt.”

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