Join fellow B'nai B'rith UK members and leaders from the Jewish community throughout Europe for the 2013 "European Days of Jewish Culture & Heritage" from September 15-29.
This year's theme is "Judaism and the Natural World."
> Historic synagogue tours
> Heritage walks
> Guided community tours
> Art lectures
> Musical performances
> and more.
As Heritage Days fall over Succot this year, many synagogues across the country will be opening up their Succah to the public and providing seasonal refreshments, as well as on-site guides to explain about the meaning of the festival and the food that is eaten at this time of year. In London, these include Bevis Marks, East London Central Synagogue, Hampstead Synagogue, Lauderdale Road, Edgware & District Reform Synagogue, Stanmore & Canons Park United Synagogue, the New West End Synagogue, Sandys Row and the West London Synagogue.
Regionally, shuls in Brighton & Hove, Chatham, Cheltenham, Exeter, Liverpool, Ramsgate, Oxford, Birmingham, Bradford,
Glasgow, Cornwall, Thanet, Manchester, Reading and Hull will all open their doors to the public.
Venues offering events this year include the Wiener Library, Ben Uri Art Gallery, the London Jewish Cultural Centre, the Jewish Historical Society of England and the Manchester Jewish Museum. There will even be a visit to the walled garden at Lambeth Palace.
Around the country, new Heritage Trails and guided walks offer visitors the chance to explore towns rich in Jewish history, including the beautiful city of York. Our walking tour guides from Go London Tours have created bespoke walks for B’nai B’rith this year, encompassing areas linked with high profile personalities who figured prominently in the history of BBUK.
In the spirit of interfaith outreach and understanding of Jewish culture, everyone is welcome!
To learn more visit http://www.bbuk.org/heritagedays.html.
The sixth B’nai B’rith Europe Young Jewish Adult Forum, organized in association with B’nai B’rith United Kingdom, was held in London Nov. 16 to 18 and was highlighted by special guest Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier captured by Hamas terrorists and held captive for five years.
About 200 delegates from more than 20 European countries, Israel and the United States shared a memorable event under the theme “Disobedience.” The idea was for attendees to think about Jewish traditions, self-criticism and thinking outside the box and how all of these factors have played a part in Jewish survival.
The spotlight was on Shalit, who was freed last year. While attending the forum, Shalit was awarded with an honorary B’nai B’rith membership.
The Israeli Ambassador to the United Kingdom Daniel Taub received Shalit at his residence, along with B’nai B’rith leaders. Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks was also present at the highly emotional meeting.
Shalit then visited the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, meeting with the Minister for the Middle East and North Africa Alistair Burt, President of B’nai B’rith Europe Ralph Hofmann, President of B’nai B’rith United Kingdom Jean Etherton, Director of B’nai B’rith World Center in Jerusalem (which played a big role in ensuring Shalit’s presence at the forum) Alan Schneider, and International Vice President and Chair of the Young Adult Commission of B’nai B’rith Europe John P. Reeves.
B’nai B’rith International President Allan J. Jacobs attended the forum and spoke at the gala dinner about the vital importance of the rejuvenation of B’nai B’rith around the globe. B’nai B’rith Executive Vice President Daniel S. Mariaschin also spoke about the Gaza situation and its potential consequences for Israel and the Middle East.
During the conference, Etherton and Hofmann greeted the participants and distinguished speakers. Ishmael Khaldi, counsellor for Civil Society Affairs at the Israeli Embassy in London, was one of the distinguished speakers, giving a fascinating account of his experiences as an Israeli diplomat, a Bedouin and a Muslim.
The Forum was very successful, not only because of the turnout and the speakers, but because of the primary organizers Simone Hofmann and Reeves.
Rebecca Saltzman, the International Chair of the B’nai B’rith Young Professional Network and recent recipient of the Label A. Katz award, was present at the forum and extended an open invitation for all young professionals to seek her out and discuss ways to connect B’nai B’rith communities across the globe. Saltzman noted how enthusiastic the attendees were about getting involved in their communities and bolstering the Young Professional Network.
Margaret Brearley, Ph.D. an expert on Jewish-Christian relations; Rabbi Andrew Steinman, writer and publicist; and Hagai Segal, specialist on Middle East affairs, all tackled the “Disobedience” theme of the forum.
The panel speakers on the B’nai B’rith Workshop “From Theory to Practice” included Honorary Life President of B’nai B’rith United Kingdom Sylvia Lewin, Raoul Beck of Geneva, Hofmann and Schneider.
The co-chairs of the forum, Valerie Achache and Simon Weinstein, moderated various discussions with help from Nuno Wahnon Martins, B’nai B’rith director of EU affairs.
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