Rosh Hashanah in Darlington 5772 and 5726
posted 8 Apr 2012, 02:21 by Peninnah Pappworth-McAllister
The Darlington congregation welcomed Rabbi Borts and visitors from Israel, Newcastle, Leeds and Manchester for its 2nd day Rosh Hashana service.
Preceding the service, the Rabbi led a very moving ceremony for Jimmy Robertson completing his conversion to Judaism. Jimmy wore his tallit and was called up to the Torah for the first time. Jimmy was presented with a tallit bag by President/Treasurer Dr Raymond Goldberg. During her sermon, Rabbi Borts spoke about the respect owed by the Jewish-born community to those who have chosen to embrace Judaism and followed the rigorous period of study and reflection needed.
The service was followed by a very lavish and filling communal Kiddush prepared by the Darlington members.
Whilst searching for light-bulbs for our outside lights ready for Kol Nidre, I came across a newspaper article about the Darlington Congregation’s celebrations of Rosh Hashanah 5726.The lengthy broadsheet columns written by R Scarr (writing I suspect for a local paper) outline the customs and practices relating to RH services before giving a detailed summary of the history of Jewish people in England starting with the Norman Conquest! An even longer section deals with the history of Jews in Darlington starting in 1884 including details of the community’s fairly frequent changes of synagogue premises and the lives of prominent Jewish citizens such as Cllr Barnett Jacksonwhobecame mayor of the town in 1941. The article ends with the following, “And now on the threshold of the Jewish year 5726 we (extend….) to our Jewish citizens ‘ warmest wishes for God’s blessing on their personal lives and in their lives as members of the House of Israel and of all humanity’ during the coming year.”