Our title mixes Hebrew and Cornish. ‘Kehillat’ is understood as (Jewish) community and ‘Kernow’ is the ancient form for Cornwall – thus we arrive at the Jewish Community of Cornwall.
We have been established since 1999 and our members come from widely differing backgrounds. We have former members of the progressive movement, people who were brought up in the orthodox tradition, others who have been part of the reform establishment for many years, some who have converted to Judaism, and some, indeed, who are in the process of converting. We also have members who are not Jewish at all. The final words of the Dr Jonathan Sacks, the Chief Rabbi, in his well known book ‘The Dignity of Difference’ apply to the formation of our community within the body of Judaism itself – “Difference does not diminish; it enlarges the sphere of human possibilities.”
With just over 80 members, although still small in number, we continue to grow, with new members joining our ranks each year. We also welcome the many Jewish holiday visitors who come to Cornwall from all parts of the world.
We hold regular fortnightly Shabbat services at Three Bridges School (just off the A30 towards Blackwater and near Chiverton Cross Roundabout). Festival services are also held on a regular basis either at members’ houses or in appropriate halls. These services are conducted by a growing band of volunteer members whose prowess grows year by year and we have, from time to time, had the occasional input from student rabbis of the Leo Baeck College.
As a community we are associated with the Reform Synagogues of Great Britain from which organisation we have received considerable help and support, especially from David Jacobs, the director of the RSGB’s synagogue support service. We have also, in the past, had the valuable support of Elkan & Celia Levy and their visits have always been memorable.
We are currently associated with the InterFaith Community of Cornwall and our chairman is currently a member of the task force looking into the establishment of 'Dor Kemmyn' (Common Ground) where people of all faiths can come together and meet. The ultimate aim is to have a specific building and at the present time (2011) we have a site and a design. The next step will be fund raising! You can find more information on the Dor Kemmyn website.
Our own subscription rates are very modest and we have charitable status, which makes such subscriptions even more useful to our budgetary needs.
We look forward to meeting many more visitors. When you see how (reasonably) well organised we are and you experience the warmth of our community you may wish to become permanent ‘friends’ of the community. For a reduced subscription you will receive a copy of our regular (full colour)newsletter and be able to attend any services and most events during your visits to Cornwall.
If you require further information you may visit us on our website kehillatkernow.com where there is a 'guest' page for your own comments or feel free to contact me by e-mail.
Remember whatever the weather here in Cornwall, you can be assured of a warm welcome from Kehillat Kernow.
Registered Charity No 1090562
VIew our Constitution.
|L'ag B'omer, Gwithian