In each issue, we hope to include a greeting from one of the S&P communities. This issue's greeting comes from Borehamwood.
To anyone who’s been to Rambam Sephardi Synagogue at Yavneh College in Borehamwood, it’s clear that our vision is coming true – “To be part of a Jewish contemporary world where each of us is welcomed and feels like we're all related.”
At its beginnings in 2011, my wife Michie and I met a handful of committed Sephardim who wished to start having services at Allum Hall. By 2016, the congregation moved to Yavneh College and the new premises have proven popular to draw in visitors and friends. Rambam now has over 55 member families.
Having spent many years as a member at the Spanish & Portuguese Synagogue in New York before arriving here, it was also important for me to integrate these beautiful traditions into our services, which I do each Shabbat.
Outside of the sanctuary, we're known for four signature annual events. 1. Tu B’Shvat Seder which often has more than 70 varieties of exotic fruits, 2. Our Purim celebrations include a Iraqi-sung Megillah reading, a festive meal cooked by the community and a full-costumed stage play acted out by our children and adults. 3. For Lag LaOmer, we have a huge bonfire and BBQ at a nearby scout camp with archery for children and adults. 4. There’s our 2-week sleepover summer camp under the stars which begins on 29 July this year.
The community pioneered a series of local events including: Shesh Besh Tournaments, Film Evenings, Controversial Conversations and Cooking Sephardi-themed Meals. We empower creativity and participation. Members have a wellspring of talent, which when unleashed and focused, really does prove the axiom that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
In 2017, Rambam Sephardi received a National Lottery grant to conduct programmes for the wider community on issues of; balancing our household finances, youth leadership training, mental health awareness and techniques for good parenting. And this year, we're partnering with JAMI (a mental health charity) to host courses and events.
Shabbat and Festival services buzz with the warmth of Sephardi tunes from many cultural roots, and on a Winter Shabbat morning, from the smell of Hamim. For anyone who’s been to Rambam, it’s easy to feel an instant part of this community and understand why our members and friends enjoy spending time with each other. For more information, please visit www.rambam.org.uk or contact email@example.com.