Yom Chamishi, 20 AdarI 5781
Thursday, 4 March 2021
Weymouth welcomes Liberal Judaism

LIBERAL JUDAISM is helping to bring Jewish life back to Weymouth thanks to a series of well-received events in the seaside town. Our movement has been working closely with Lord Morris Mendoza over the last few months, aiming towards the goal of establishing a full and thriving Jewish community in Weymouth.

Lord Mendoza hosted a moving and uplifting Chanukkah celebration in December at his guest house, led by Liberal Rabbis Anna Gerrard and Pete Tobias. The next event was a cross-communal commemoration of National Holocaust Day and the planting of a tree in honour of the victims of Nazi brutality, replacing a previous tree which had stood for more than 10 years before being senselessly vandalised.

Council leaders liaised with Lord Mendoza – who lost almost all of his family in the Holocaust – on the ceremony, which was held on Friday January 25. Rabbi Pete returned to Weymouth to take part and was joined by more than 40 people. The event was hosted by the Mayor of Weymouth and Portland, Margaret Leicester, with prayers from Reverend Chris Briggs and Rabbi Pete and some reflections by Lord Mendoza.

One of the elements of the day that was highlighted by Rabbi Pete was the fact that National Holocaust Memorial Day 2013 coincided with Tu Bishvat and that the significance of planting a tree represented both an act of memorial and an expression of hope for the future.

Liberal Judaism chief executive Rabbi Danny Rich said: “Once again, Liberal Judaism's pioneering work in small communities, based on the great groundwork laid by Lord Mendoza, has seen this new group grow and develop.

“Some people at the Chanukkah gathering hadn’t celebrated a Jewish festival for 20 years and were moved to tears by the experience. I’m really excited about the future for Judaism in Weymouth and many more such events being held there.”

The next event in Weymouth will be a communal Seder, led by Rabbi Pete and held in Lord Mendoza’s guest house, on Monday March 25. For more information on the Seder and how you can get involved please contact Rabbi Pete on This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it