Special Shabbat demonstrates 'vibrant' life on Merseyside


The fourth Shabbat Across The Mersey involved some 900 people - approaching half the area's Jewish population.

Starting with a pre-Shabbat Yom Ha'atzmaut party on the King David schools campus, it continued at a variety of venues, with a "switch it off" campaign encouraging participants to turn off their mobile phones at 7pm.

The Childwall and Allerton shuls were involved, as well as local Lubavitch and Rex Cohen Court.

In the communal spirit of the event, dozens of meals and care packages were enjoyed by people at home, in hospital and in the Stapely care establishment. This year's celebration extended to Shabbat day.

Childwall's Rabbi Mordechai Wallenberg - who produced song and davening books and a guide to keeping Shabbat for the event - attributed its success to having been "a genuinely collaborative effort.

"We have started to see people who take part in the Shabbat coming to other events."

Ian Cohen, chair of Merseyside Jewish Representative Council, said it had become "one of the most important events on our calendar.

"By once again bringing a Shabbat experience to us all - and making a traditional Friday night meal available to many who would not otherwise experience it - we provide further evidence of a vibrant and energised Jewish community."

In a message of support, Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis hoped that the "worthy initiative would strengthen Jewish identity".

The Shabbat was established as a means to honour the memory of local girl Tilly Rosenblatt, who died in her late teens.

"It is a great tribute to the values she stood for - of unity, positivity and the importance of Jewish tradition," Rabbi Wollenberg said.

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