Woodford Forest US Make First Rabbinic Appointments
Date Uploaded: 
Wednesday 10th June 2015

Last Sunday one of the newest United Synagogue communities, Woodford Forest US, voted to appoint Rabbi Mordechai and Rebbetzen Blima Wollenberg as their first rabbinic couple. The couple had overwhelming support as they received 100% of the vote following a successful Shabbat with the community.  

Rabbi & Rebbetzen Wollenberg have spent a combined twelve years in their previous posts in Cardiff and Liverpool.  Whilst in Liverpool, they were instrumental in spearheading the initiative of ‘Shabbat across the Mersey’ which attracted over 900 people from diverse communities in the north of England.

Woodford Forest was formerly two congregations, Wanstead & Woodford United Synagogue and Waltham Forest Hebrew Congregation, which decided to merge last November. The community currently has over 1,400 members.  

Commenting on the appointment Rabbi Wollenberg commented: “Blima and I are very excited to have the opportunity to lead this brand-new community. After spending Shabbat with them, we were struck by their warmth and friendliness. We have been extremely touched by the support that we have received and are looking forward to working and growing with our new community”.

Graeme Taylor, Chair of the Selection Committee said: “We were very fortunate to have received several high quality applications for the post.  However, in the end our decision to recommend Rabbi and Rebbetzen Wollenberg for the position was quite easy as they were outstanding candidates.  Their vision for our newly formed community is very exciting and we are certain that they will help the community grow and prosper over the years to come”.

Sally Caplan, co-chairperson of Woodford Forest added: “We are all very excited that Rabbi and Rebbetzen Wollenberg are joining us.  They proved to be an instant hit with the community following their recent Shabbat with us”.