Yom Shishi, 14 AdarI 5781
Purim Friday, 26 February 2021
Liberal Judaism in the press – Top 5 Stories

The last year has seen the profile of Liberal Judaism rise higher than ever. Our communities, rabbis and members have been featured on TV and radio, as well as in print and online press – covering national, regional and religious publications.

Here are five of our favourite media appearances:

1. York Liberal Jewish Community in The Observer
This lengthy feature looked at how our movement has brought Judaism back to York, giving the city’s Jews a chance to uphold their faith, while accepting the realities of modern life. It is a great example of Liberal Judaism in action and our principles around Jewish identity. YLJC chair Ben Rich is quoted in the article, saying: “We say to people: we’re interested in your story, your experiences and your values, rather than your biology.”

2. Rabbi Leah Jordan on Songs of Praise
Liberal Judaism’s student and young adult chaplain Rabbi Leah Jordan starred on BBC One’s Songs of Praise as part of a Christian/Jewish Mitzvah Day project, cooking for the homeless. Leah said: “Getting people from different backgrounds in a room together, working towards the same goal, is one of the best ways to build relationships.”

3. Rabbi Danny Rich on BBC Radio
Liberal Judaism’s senior rabbi, Rabbi Danny Rich, appeared on multiple BBC Radio stations urging the British Government to accept 20,000 refugees and taking on the arguments of those who wish to limit the number of refugees coming to Britain and Europe. Danny told the BBC World Service: “What we know is that very many migrants, indeed the overwhelming majority of them, prove to be excellent citizens who make great contributions to the cultural and economic wellbeing of society.”

4. Rabbi Harry Jacobi in The Jewish News
Writing on the occasion of his 90th birthday, Rabbi Harry Jacobi recalled how he fled the Nazis twice to become one of Liberal Judaism’s most senior rabbis – but still faces intolerance in Orthodox parts of the community. In a moving segment, Harry wrote: “At a national remembrance event, I requested to recite the memorial prayer El Malei Rachamim, as I alone among the officiants had lost parents and grandparents in the Shoah. I was told: ‘It is not appropriate for you to recite it.’”

5. Twilight People in The Jewish Chronicle
In an in-depth article, the JC looked at Liberal Judaism’s pioneering Twilight People project and how our communities can make trans Jews feel more welcome. Twilight People project manager Surat Shaan-Knan told the paper: "We need to promote a greater knowledge and understanding of the needs and requirements of transgender and gender-variant people. Often there is little awareness about the difference between sexual orientation and gender identity. Every rabbi should look into the development of life-cycle events and liturgy. Jewish ritual should be adapted in trans-inclusive ways.”