Leo Baeck College held its annual Ordination ceremony on Sunday 6th July 2014. The service, at which three new rabbis from the College were ordained, was held for the first time at Edgware & District Reform Synagogue and witnessed by a packed congregation.
The three new rabbis are Rabbi Dr René Pfertzel, who will divide his time between his congregation in Lyons, France, and Finchley Progressive Synagogue, Rabbi Dr Kate Briggs, who has already taken up a position at Glasgow Reform Synagogue and Rabbi Julia Grishchenko who will continue to do much needed and valued work with her community in Odessa, Ukraine.
The 2014 Ordination had an added dimension in that Rabbi Alexander Dukhovny, Chief Rabbi to the Progressive Jews of Kyiv and Ukraine and an alumnus of Leo Baeck, ordained Rabbi Grishchenko in Russian, the first time this had happened in the College’s fifty eight year history. On being ordained, Rabbi Grishchenko said: “I have known for 20 years that I wanted to be a Rabbi. Today is a day of great transformation in my life. I am deeply committed to my community in Odessa and to ensuring that like me, they can live truly inclusive, Progressive Jewish lives today and tomorrow.”
Leo Baeck College is extremely proud of its three new Rabbis who will undoubtedly provide leadership and strength to the communities in which they will serve.
Leo Baeck College is a preeminent institution of Jewish scholarship and learning that is open to all. At Leo Baeck College we combine inspirational, high calibre teaching with a commitment to enriching the intellectual and spiritual lives of the Progressive Jewish Community.