Thursday, 23 May 2013

Places of Faith-Jewish Synagogue

The second visit on our places of faith trips, it was supposed to be the first but got cancelled so it was good to be able to visit. We came a few years back pre-blog (second place recently that was pre-blog) and it was a good visit but the children couldn't remember visiting.

We left Bailey at home as his brace was hurting and he could remember visiting last time, plus since his last trip to the mosque had him passing out I wasn't willing to risk a similar situation! 

Thanks to an incredibly delayed doctors appointment we arrived 15 minutes late! Seems to be becoming a habit, hope not. The Rabbi was very good about it though. He chatted to us about the Jewish calendar and how every four years they have a thirteenth month. Then we moved into a room which wasn't finished last time, it had a wall made with stone from Israel and then a map showing where in the world Jews from this synagogue originated from. The children liked the map and Cordelia took these few photos.

Sorry this one doesn't want to turn!

Plaques with the names of people and where they were from.

This sculpture was in the entrance hall and all the children were fascinated by it. The sculpture is of a burning bush and from the story of Moses who saw a burning bush on a hill, the fire did not consume the bush and when Moses went to to see for himself he heard the voice of God. The sculpture was made with one piece of metal and has the Hebrew spelling of  God on three of the leaves.

Ruben took these photos

Candelabra representing the 8 nights of Hannuka and how a small amount of oil, enough to last one night lasted for 8 until more oil was found. Ruben liked the windows which represent the material and bells on the scrolls.

The Ten Commandments written in Hebrew with a light that is always lit, it's a lightbulb rather than a candle due to health & safety.

The seven books of the Torah in the Arc.

The children were allowed to hold some of the items from the Arc, including this beautiful silver ornament (sure it has another name but it escapes me) which has bells on and allows the person holding it to alert everyone in the synagogue that the Torah is being carried through.

Ruben made me pose for this photo holding this very heavy crown that goes over the scrolls. He even told me I had to smile!

All synagogues have some kind of memorial to the six million Jews killed during the holocaust and this was there's, It has six lights. We have done quite a bit of work on WW2 and the holocaust and the girls have both read the Diary of Anne Frank. I think it's something we will revisit as it was a while ago now.

Outside of the synagogue with a friend we haven't seen in ages, was lovely to see them again.

A really informative visit, the Rabbi is brilliant with the children and answered all their questions. He chatted to them about racism and religion which I thought was really good and made a lot of points that I hope the children took on board, he told them how individual they all were and really made them feel very special. A really enjoyable visit that I'm glad we were able to make.


  1. Fascinating- ! I would love to visit a synagogue (think our nearest might be in Brighton) looks like a really interesting visit.

  2. So interesting and a bit different from the one we went to last month. So glad your family was able to visit a synagogue it is a great learning opportunity