Office of the Chief Rabbi

Kenton Dive Deep into Jewish History During a Visit to Cambridge’s Cairo Genizah

Event

Kenton’s trip to the Cairo Genizah was a beautiful way to explore ancient Jewish history and gain an insight into how Jewish people lived their lives 900 years ago. A Genizah is where synagogues store their written items before they dispose of them and this catalogue of letters and significant written scraps, create a picture of life from years ago. It also allowed the community to understand more about the life of Maimonides (Rambam). The visit commenced with a talk by Dr Schmierer-Lee on the collection’s history and significance. The remainder of the time in the Genizah was spent viewing items on display. Everyone then went on a walking tour of Cambridge, taking in the beautiful architecture and enjoying the day out together as a community.

Evaluation from Vice-Chair Roy Block:

“The Genizah visit educated us about 900 years of life in Cairo including actual handwriting by Maimonides. The coach trip and walking tour of Cambridge was very communal and encouraged members to engage with new people. It showed that life in the Kenton community is very vibrant. It was good that non-shul attendees enjoyed the trip”.

Participant Feedback:

  • ‘A well organised and extremely engrossing day. Cambridge is lovely, the guided walk and tour of Queens’ College was interesting and the Cairo Genizah amazing – both the exhibits and the very instructive accompanying slides and lecture. Fascinating to see individuals’ ordinary correspondence as well as the Torah Scrolls’.
  • ‘Excellent. Really interesting, with a brilliant presentation and explanation and it was nice to be with my shul friends on this outing’.