20 February 2017
The first ever combined service of Liberal Judaism’s northern communities has taken place in York, attended by around 120 people.
Liberal Judaism members and friends from as far afield as Cumbria, Northumbria, Nottingham, Durham and Manchester gathered for the service, which was led by Rabbi Tanya Sakhnovich (Nottingham Liberal Synagogue), Student Rabbi Deborah Blausten (York Liberal Jewish Community) and Rabbi Robert Ash (Lancashire and Cumbria Liberal Jewish Community).
Addressing the congregation, Rabbi Danny Rich, senior rabbi of Liberal Judaism, promised that the service would be the first of many projects.
Danny announced Liberal Judaism’s intention to established a Northern Communities Alliance comprising Durham, Edinburgh, Lancashire and Cumbria, Lincoln, Manchester and York.
He said that he hoped the Alliance would hold Northern events and conferences and share knowledge, skills and resources across the region.
Ben Rich, chair of York Liberal Jewish Community, said: “I anticipate that this was one of the largest Liberal Jewish gatherings in the country this weekend. What an amazing thought that it took place in York where, less than three years ago, there was no community.
“Liberal Judaism – because of its inclusivity and openness to all – is truly on the march in the North of England.”
A highlight of the service saw the congregation burst into spontaneous applause when it was announced that York members, Sinan and Dena Nuuman and their children, Yara and Liza, from Iraq – who have been seeking asylum in the UK – have been granted leave to remain.
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