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Chief visits Bristol and Cardiff

Last updated: 2003-12-16

On Sunday, 14 December the Chief Rabbi, Dr Jonathan Sacks, visited the communities of Cardiff and Bristol.

In Cardiff the Chief Rabbi opened the new Synagogue and communal mikvah. He had a tour of the building and met local dignitaries. In Bristol the Chief Rabbi addressed 60 members of the community and the students on the subject of Jewish Responsibility.

Commenting on his Cardiff visit, the Chief Rabbi said:

“The new synagogue and centre in Cardiff are a tribute to the community’s vision and foresight. It took great courage to leave Penylan synagogue, of which so many people had such strong attachments, and build for the future. The new centre is superb and will bring fresh vitality to Cardiff Jewry. Led by their outstanding young Rabbi, Mordechai Wallenberg, I foresee great things in years to come. Cardiff’s strategy is a model for other communities to emulate. I was inspired by what I saw, especially by the way the community is putting its children first. I congratulate all those who had a share in this transformation.”

After the visit to Bristol the Chief Rabbi commented: “The Bristol Jewish community is small but wonderfully strong. They have one of the most beautiful small synagogues in Britain and have excellent relations with the wider community, Bristol University, Clifton College and many other groups. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit. We had a lively discussion on many themes and I found the congregation rich in character and commitment.”

Mr Blasebalk, the President of Cardiff United Synagogue, said:

“The Chief Rabbi acted as a wonderful shamash to whole community and the management team here in Cardiff. He has ignited enthusiasm with his passion and energy. We now go forward with a new shul, a new Rabbi and increased optimism about the future of Cardiff Jewry.”

Leonard Glyn, the President of Bristol Hebrew Congregation, added:

“The Chief Rabbi made us aware that our small numbers do not mean that we are not insignificant and that this was a considerable comfort to a community that sometimes calculates members rather than their various contributions. The visit was a great success and everyone who I spoke to wanted to be associated.”

For more information on the Chief Rabbi, visit