ShabbatUK 2014

  • ShabbatUK 2014: Overview


    ShabbatUK at Mill Hill was a marvellous opportunity to connect those involved with the Shul, as well as our two local Jewish primary schools, with all three locations playing host.

    A Carlebach-style Kabbalat Shabbat service was enjoyed by the whole congregation after which over 450 guests enjoyed a full four-course traditional Friday night meal. Each table was adorned with paper flower decorations made by the children of Etz Chaim and Mathilda Marks Kennedy Primary Schools, many of whom were seated with their parents for the meal. Each table boasted hand baked challah made of the dough donated by many of our members who had the opportunity to attend the magnificent Challah Bake-Off at Allianz Park the previous evening.

    The meal was enhanced by the singing of traditional zemirot and dancing, with more than 70 of our youth enjoying their own lively meal with singing and dancing.

    Shabbat morning saw two services in the Shul – our Hashkamah early morning service was attended by over 50, followed by our traditional main service, with Mathilda Marks Kennedy School simultaneously playing host to the community with a special ShabbatUK Family Explanatory Service presented by Rabbi Malcolm Herman of Seed. These two services saw a combined attendance of over 750. With childrens’ services in both locations run by volunteers both the Shul and the School, even the youngest attendees were engaged and participating. The service at MMK was followed by a bumper communal meaty Kiddush including a whisky bar boasting 18 different types! With the sun shining, this lasted well into the afternoon as members continued to enjoy the communal spirit.

    After our wonderful Bnei Akiva mardrichim ran a great afternoon of activities for over 60 children back at the Shul, and soon after Shabbat ended it was Etz Chaim’s opportunity to play host for a spiritual Havdallah ceremony attended by over 350, with musical accompaniment and lively singing followed by partying, a mass scavenger hunt and (more!) food . . . candy floss and snacks being the order of the day.

    ShabbatUK was a fantastic chance to meet and engage with those connected with all three sites, and plans are already in place for next year’s ShabbatUK events and activities. We are also delighted to be continuing our Carlebach-style Kabbalat Shabbat once a month with a fantastic hot Kiddush to follow and plans are in place for a monthly Rosh Chodesh challah bake for the women of the community.

    To read a message the Chief Rabbi about ShabbatUK, click here.


  • ShabbatUK 2014: Chief Rabbi's message


    ShabbatUK 2014 – ONE WEEK LATER
    At a time when we are still under the spell of last week’s remarkable Shabbat experience, I would like to share a few reflections with you.
    First of all, thank you so much for participating in ShabbatUK. Together, we enjoyed a historic weekend for the British Jewish community. The overall remarkable impact was due to everything that you, your family, your friends and community did which collectively gave tremendous joy and inspiration to the whole of the British community.
    ShabbatUK took place on Parshat Noach, in which there is a poignant description of the aftermath of the flood.  What was the first thing that Noah did once the flood was over?  There are occasions in our lives when we are struck by extraordinary experiences; events that have the potential to provide a turning point in our lives; times when we feel that perhaps Hashem is trying to tell us something.
    The flood was certainly such an event.  All of mankind had been destroyed except for one single family.  Emerging as a new Adam, how was Noah going to respond to the monumental experience that he had lived through. The Torah gives us the answer;
    “And Noah, the man of the ground, recommenced life and planted a vineyard.  He drank the wine, became drunk and rolled on the ground in his tent” (Genesis 9:20).
    For Noah, it was as if the flood has not occurred. He quickly moved back to being his original self. What a missed opportunity!
    Please ensure that the remarkably impactful experiences that we enjoyed last Shabbat at family, communal, national and global levels, will prompt us to guarantee that this coming Shabbat will be different the one we had 14 days before.
    In this spirit I call on you please to yet again “do one more thing”, something extra or different for this Shabbat.  Perhaps, if these activities are not your regular practice, you can light the Shabbat candles, bless your children, attend a Shul service, have a great Shabbat meal, make kiddush or havdalah or sing the Grace after Meals.  Or, perhaps this Shabbat you can make it more meaningful by refraining certain activities you might normally do. Whatever it is that you decide, I have no doubt that your day will be immeasurably enriched.
    Together, let’s ensure that the impact of ShabbatUK will live on.
    With warm regards and very best wishes. 
    Shabbat Shalom!
    Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis


  • ShabbatUK: Archive
    See how the Mill Hill community has embraced the amazing Shabbat UK project every year by clicking on the links below:

    ShabbatUK 2017
    ShabbatUK 2016
    ShabbatUK 2015
    ShabbatUK 2014
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