David Cameron backs ‘wonderful initiative’
DAVID CAMERON has declared his support for Shabbat UK, the nationwide celebration of the Jewish day of rest taking place this weekend.
The prime minister said the event, launched by Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, was “a wonderful Jewish initiative that brings together tens of thousands across our country to celebrate the unity and sense of community that has been a hallmark of Jewish life for generations”.
He added that it had a wider message that spoke to everyone in Britain.
“We can all benefit from taking a moment to appreciate the value of family, friends and community life,” he said.
Mr Cameron wished everyone taking part Shabbat Shalom.
Rabbi Mirvis has welcomed Shabbat UK programmes being organised around the UK, saying the event had “galvanised” communities.
“It is going to Shabbat UK mascots: Kiddush cup, candles and challah be a wonderful weekend for many reasons,” he said.
“I’ve been particularly excited to hear about the programmes being organised in Manchester and Leeds that are breaking new ground in celebrating the beauty of Shabbat,” he said.
He and his wife, Valerie, would be spending Shabbat in Manchester — “Where we are always made to feel so welcome.”
Rabbi Mirvis answered questions from JC readers when he visited the newspaper’s north-west London office last week.
Taking over the JC Twitter account, he responded to queries ranging from Shabbat food to the importance of prayer. He revealed: “I always cook for Shabbat. My favourite dish is roast chicken and roast potatoes.”
The venue for the Shabbat UK havdala party on Saturday evening has been moved from Brent Cross to Finchley United Synagogue, after difficulties in obtaining th e co r - rect music licence.