All posts by Jeremy

Holocaust Memorial Service and TalkSunday 24 January, 5:00 p.m.

1. Two short animations prepared by students and teachers at the University of Falmouth

2. Candle lighting 

3. Service led by Pat Lipert and Adam Feldman, based on the Yom HaShoah service and including some additional readings from other sources.

4. Holocaust testimony of Blanka Engelberg, late mother of Kehillat Kernow member Cynthia Clare Hollinsworth

Cynthia will share with us the testimony of her mother describing her horrific nightmare of the Nazi concentration camps including Auschwitz II (Birkenau) , her remarkable story of survival and ultimately her journey to a meaningful life after liberation.

The whole event will last a little over one hour. If you wish to attend please send your name to this email address.


We wish to thank the Cornwall Faith Forum and Falmouth University for their co-operation in preparing our event.

Weekly bulletin

A huge thank you to John Adelson for his Erev Shabbat service & Kiddush last Friday including his interesting and informative talk on Noah. Congratulations, as well, to Alexandra who lit the candles at our service and attended an Affirmation Service on Saturday morning at her ‘other place’, i.e. Jackson’s Row in Manchester.
This week we have a Shabbat Service & Kiddush led by Jeremy Jacobson. Please join us this Saturday @ 10.30 am. We will again be honouring Alexandra, so come armed with a Mazel tov and a Yasher ko’akh.

Future Services/Events:

There is no service on 30 October but a Shabbat service on 31 October led by Jeremy Jacobson. Shabbat Lech ‘cha 13 Cheshvan

This week we start he story of Abraham and Sarah, our wonderful ancestors who are both archetypal Jews and archetypal human beings. Their story and character are especially ours, but we cannot have them totally to ourselves, for they have lessons for all of humanity. They are, too, very human, individual and alive. Last year we spoke about journeys to and from the beginning. This year, we will look at another aspect of their special and universal relevance.

Erev Shabbat service & Kiddush – 6 November @ 6pm led Liz Berg. Shabbat Va-yeira, 20 Cheshvan

Erev Shabbat service & Kiddush – 13 November @ 6pm led by Sharim Atilano. Shabbat Chayyei Sarah, 27 Cheshvan

Event:

Following the success of ‘Cornish Island Discs’ and ‘Just a Jewish Minute’, we will be holding our next event at the end of November will be ‘Favourite Books’. The details, including date and time, will follow.

New website for Reform Judaism

Today, Reform Judaism launched its synagogue locator website, to connect those seeking a community for the High Holy Days with their local synagogue.

To sign up simply requires entering your postcode and filling out the form.

Here in Cornwall, we will have a full programme of services, combining meaningful prayer and dynamic learning, led by Student Rabbi David-Yehuda Stern. Our programme will bring together the communities of Kehillat Kernow, South Hampshire Reform Jewish Community and the Isle of Wight Jewish Society.

Cancellation of services and OUR Communal Seder Night due to the Coronavirus

The Prime Minister addressed the country on 12 March 2020 through a news bulletin outlining the serious situation the country faces with the spread of the Coronavirus. The most important thing we can do to protect each other and reduce the speed with which this illness affects people is to minimise social contact. Coronavirus is now circulating in the general community throughout in the UK and Cornwall. To protect all members we have taken the decision to suspend all Shabbat Services including the one on Saturday, 14 March 2020 until further notice and this year’s communal Seder Night. This is in keeping with advice from Reform Judaism

Coronavirus can be transmitted before people have symptoms and the only action that can be taken in order to slow down the rate of transmission is reducing social mixing.

We are not aware of anyone at this time within Kehillat Kernow who has been diagnosed and very much hope everyone remains healthy.

When the public health situation settles we will be able to resume services.

T’rumah: unholy acts in holy places?

One evening last week, an East Asian looking student was walking home from a gym in Sheffield when a man standing in a doorway shouted at her, “Chinese bitch!” In fact, she was not Chinese and had never been to China, not that this should have mattered. Further afield, in the central Poltava region of Ukraine, protestors attacked buses carrying evacuees from China to a spa in order to be quarantined. Meanwhile, Canadian Chinese and other South Asians have expressed fears of growing anti-Asian sentiments and prejudice among the wider Canadian community. The aggressors in all these cases have clearly not read or heard the Ten Commandments, which appeared (two weeks ago) in the parsha of Yitro, for does it not say, “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.”? Or perhaps they have read this commandment. Perhaps they have read and heard it many times, but somehow it passed over them, like water off a duck’s back.

The commandment is expanded upon in the following parsha of Mishpatim: “Thou shalt not utter a false report; put not thy hand with the wicked to be an unrighteous witness. Thou shalt not follow a multitude to do evil.” In the same parsha, we are told twice not to oppress the stranger in our midst, which is what the outraged inhabitant of Sheffield did and what some Canadians are believed to be starting to do. In the case of Ukraine, the victims were not even strangers, though perhaps for the inhabitants of Poltava, they had somehow become strangers by living in a land far away.

Mishpatim is, as its name suggests, a collection of commands to act for justice and to do righteousness. The sudden change of subject to a blueprint for the building of the Sanctuary in this week’s parsha of T’rumah might, therefore at first sight, seem odd. For God to dwell among us however, as He declares He intends to do, the place where He will dwell needs to be special. It needs to be fit for holiness, but how can a holy place be in our midst if we ourselves are not dedicated to holiness? Indeed, it will be the way we act and the things we do which will determine whether the place will be holy or not. Our behaviour becomes the space and one of the worst ways we can desecrate that space is to bear false witness, to search for and hurl our rage against those we blame for our misfortunes. Don’t we know it!

This Saturday we have a special treat, for the service will be led jointly by Rabbi Maurice Michaels from Bournemouth and Murray Brown, currently commuting between Cornwall and London to his new job. We would like to have a more special kiddish lunch than normal, partly in honour of our guest, partly because two of our members will be getting married on the Saturday evening, namely Rachel Brown and Roger Chatfield. Please try, therefore, to bring something good to share.