I am sure by now everyone has heard about the new lockdown rules coming into effect tonight at 11.59pm. We unfortunately will be suspending all in-person events and services but will offer some virtual services and events. Please see below for details.

As always, this can be a very stressful and difficult time for people and if you are in need of any support please do not hesitate to call me! We hopefully do have a light at the end of the tunnel with the vaccines being rolled out and I was personally fortunate to have my first jab today. I encourage everyone to go get it as soon as you are eligible!

I also wanted to share something I wrote this week on social media after seeing the rampant anti-Semitism across the globe.

“It’s hard to believe that just mere months ago humanity had probably its greatest awakening, a monumental equaliser that literally stopped the world as we knew it.

Covid-19 changed our lives in so many profound ways and reminded us all that we breath the same air and bleed the same colour blood.

It highlighted what was important in this world and encouraged us to reflect on things that needed to change. Life as we knew it needed a new way forward!

Maybe it was being naïve or possibly being a dreamer, but it seemed there would indeed be a changed post-Covid world. It felt like there was a seismic shift that had occurred and one which would in fact reveal a better world. A world of mutual respect, peace, kindness and harmony…

Sadly the past few weeks have been a rude awakening. The lessons have quickly been forgotten. The vitriol, hatred and anti-Semitic hatred being spewed across the globe has been distressing and extremely disappointing.

What has been a tremendous let-down is to witness people, people who have typically been standing up for so many causes in past, now remaining silent. Or worse still, joining the “choir” in its voicing of hate filled messages against Israel and the Jewish people.

It is at this moment that all I can think about is the great wisdom of Rabbi Yisroel Salanter when he said the following: “When I was a young man, I wanted to change the world. But I found it was difficult to change the world, so I tried to change my country. When I found I couldn’t change my country, I began to focus on my town. However, I discovered that I couldn’t change the town, and so as I grew older, I tried to change my family.

Now, as an old man, I realize the only thing I can change is myself, but I’ve come to recognize that if long ago I had started with myself, then I could have made an impact on my family. And, my family and I could have made an impact on our town. And that, in turn, could have changed the country and we could all indeed have changed the world.”

Let’s not squander the lessons of Covid-19 and maybe if each of us bring a sense of kindness and respect to our small areas of influence, we will indeed change the world!

Let’s continue believing and continue doing…! ”

Shabbat Shalom and hope you keep well through the lockdown

Rabbi Daniel Rabin

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