Finch­ley rabbi quits to start new chap­ters

The Jewish Chronicle - - COMMUNITY LIFE - JC RE­PORTER

RABBI ROD­ER­ICK Young is quit­ting Finch­ley Re­form Syn­a­gogue to fo­cus on his writ­ing. He is fin­ish­ing a chil­dren’s book and is about to em­bark on the story of his fam­ily and how he dis­cov­ered Ju­daism at the age of 23.

Rabbi Young be­came the con­gre­ga­tion’s prin­ci­pal min­is­ter in Novem­ber 2006. Since Jan­uary, he has shared rab­bini­cal du­ties with Rabbi Miriam Bay­field, an ar­range­ment de­signed to give him more writ­ing time.

How­ever, in a let­ter to con­gre­gants, he ex­plained that he needed “greater time and space in which to work”. He also wanted to be able to see more of his 87-year-old mother, who is in a care home in Dorset.

He wrote that he had been “re­ally happy at FRS, which is a warm, wel­com­ing, in­clu­sive, dy­namic com­mu­nity... Miriam Bay­field is the kind of ded­i­cated, hands-on con­gre­ga­tional rabbi that a great shul needs. It is her pres­ence and love of this com­mu­nity that al­lows me to go.” He has asked to be re­lieved of his du­ties “as soon as is con­ve­nient”.

The syn­a­gogue coun­cil this week paid trib­ute to the rabbi “for the in­spi­ra­tion he has brought to the com­mu­nity, par­tic­u­larly in adult ed­u­ca­tion”.

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