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The First Day

It’s not every Shabbat that we get to welcome new family members into your community, new members of the rainbow family of Israel, each of them bringing more colour and radiance to our diverse and inclusive community. But on Shabbat Yitro, on February 3rd 2024, after almost two years of preparation and more than a year of formal study, Lucy Lammers, Kamal Absy, Naseer Sheikh, Klio Grice and Laurin Reding were welcomed by the Kerem Beth Din convened in Brussels on January 22nd as full members of the people of Israel. And after a much longer period of preparation, Effie Meletiou and Liza Patirruhu joined their ranks on the same day.

One short week later on January 28th, each of them concluded the process with immersion in the mikveh of our sister community in Tilburg. It was a delight to welcome so many IJC members to celebrate their first Aliyah to the Torah in the presence of family and friends. Zivah (Lucy), Raphael (Kamal), Eli (Naseer), Tovah (Klio), Joshua (Laurin), Efrat (Effie) and Li’el (Liza) have already contributed a great deal of their time and energy to our community, helping to make us ever more vibrant. Thanks to you all for the delicious dessert kiddush! We look forward to many more years of their sustaining presence.

And as one group celebrated the first day of the rest of their Jewish lives, a new giur group has already commenced: Alice, Aeiko, Max, Odile, Mose, Monica, Pierre, and Timon. Fascinating individuals, already familiar faces and ready volunteers. If you are wondering who sets the coffee and brings the croissants for Torah breakfast, who bakes the challah, and sets up kiddush, look no further. Let’s continue to support and embrace them as they make their own journey to the first day of the rest of their Jewish lives. 


Rabbi Brian

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