Two United Synagogue rabbis have been formally inducted by Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis at ceremonies attended by community dignitaries.
Hadley Wood Jewish Community welcomed Rabbi Akiva Rosenblatt as their new senior rabbi and Rabbi Yossi Hambling was inducted at Birmingham’s Central Synagogue.
Although Rabbi Rosenblatt and his wife Batya joined the Hadley Wood community 18 months ago, the induction had been delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Likewise, Rabbi Hambling has been in his role at Birmingham Central Synagogue for seven months.
Born in Liverpool and raised in north west London, Rabbi Rosenblatt is a trained chazzan.
The community’s choir gave a performance of traditional songs, as well as ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ as a nod to Rabbi Rosenblatt’s affinity to Liverpool Football Club.
Speaking at the induction, former Hadley Wood Chair, John Melchior, said: “Despite joining during lockdown Rabbi and Rebbetzen Rosenblatt have made great strides in getting to know the community and are already proven to be a beloved and admired rabbinic couple by all Hadley Wood Jewish Community members!”
Attendees included the Chief Rabbi, Dayan Gelley,United Synagogue president Michael Goldstein and mayor of Enfield Sabri Ozaydin.
Rabbi and Rebbetzen Rosenblatt expressed their gratitude and thanked the community for welcoming them with “open arms”.
The pair also said they are “blessed and privileged to serve this vibrant, fast-growing community.”
In Birmingham, 140 people attended the ceremony to induct Rabbi Hambling, including representatives from the Office of the Chief Rabbi and the United Synagogue.
Rabbi Hambling grew up in Ilford, Essex After graduating from University College London in 2018he moved to Israel on a Mizrachi UK Rabbinic Fellowship. He studied in Yeshivat Har Etzion andwas a participant in Shalhevet – the leadership training programme of the World Mizrachi Movement.
Geoffrey Clements, Chair of Birmingham Central Synagogue praised the synagogue’s selection committee for recruiting the Rabbinic couple during the pandemic.
And the Chief Rabbi said: “I have no doubt history will show you will stand out amongst the greatest.”
Rabbi Hambling spoke about his ambition to: “increase regular social and cultural programming in the shul” and thanked the entire membership for the community’s warm welcome.
He said: “we look forward to travelling the road ahead together with you.”
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