Office of the Chief Rabbi

Redbridge Shavuathon

Event

A packed three-day programme offering inspiring learning and exceptional ruach over Shabbat and Shavuot brought Redbridge members together to celebrate not just the ‘Festival of Weeks’, but also the Queen’s 90th birthday. A varied learning programme involved sessions delivered by a visiting Yeshiva University graduate, Rabbi Wilson himself and chavruta learning with The Travelling Chasidim, who also enhanced the celebratory atmosphere during the acapella Shabbat service. Sunday saw an appropriately milky ‘cream tea’ Kiddush in honour of the Queen, followed by a talk on ‘Sovereignty in Jewish history’. Communal meals were enjoyed throughout the weekend.

Objectives

The aim of the programme is to continue to raise the profile of Shavuot and completely change its image from a niche festival to a Chag that everyone can enjoy
To offer learning opportunities that suit a range of members’ needs
To create an uplifting and inspiring atmosphere by hosting The Travelling Chasidim
To offer a new experience of Jewish unity for members by bringing together the scholar-in-residence, the Chasidic families and Redbridge members

Evaluation from Rabbi Wilson

‘The programme undoubtedly achieved my aim of updating Shavuot’s image, by making the entire three days into a celebration, which included learning, musical davening and wonderful food. In addition to enjoying the Yom Tov spirit, the scholar in residence was extremely well received. It was eye-opening for the community to have both a group of lively Chassidim and a young YU graduate for the Chag. Some of the verbal feedback was incredible. Thanks again to CRE for the support!’

Participant Feedback:

  • I felt that the atmosphere was very good and I am sure everyone who attended got a lot out of the several talks, learning sessions and services and look forward to more of these communal events. It shows with the correct mix of events Shul can be a good social event.
  • It shows with the right amount of effort, going to Shul can be a nice occasion and a very social occasion where you can reach out and get more of our congregation involved and interested in coming to Shul more often.
  • Both Rabbi Schwarz and Rabbi Wilson gave very interesting and informative shiurim, we learnt a lot. Having The Travelling Chasidim with us worked very well, it was very enlightening for all of us having the wives and children too.