Rank and File: A Sentimental Journey and Rewarding Study

President Reuven Rivlin awards Limmud study network with the Jewish Unity Prize

President Reuven Rivlin and Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat with Limmud Chair David Hoffman and Limmud Chief Executive Eli Ovits.
Evyatar Nissan

Sentimental journey: Former members of Bnei Akiva who immigrated to Israel during the 1970s and ‘80s held a reunion in Acre last week. Guest speakers included Johnny Oberman, a former Australian who is an award-winning Israeli educator and was a Bnei Akiva emissary in London for a time; Rabbi Prof. Daniel Sinclair, originally from North London, who served as a rabbi in Edinburgh, and Prof. David Newman OBE, another ex-North Londoner, who served as a dean of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and was awarded the Order of the British Empire for promoting scientific cooperation between Britain and Israel. Some 55 families reminisced about life as former Britons living in Israel, recalling many memories of growing up in the Anglo-Jewish community and attending Bnei Akiva camps and events, Newman told Haaretz. The event was organized by Ami Shor, originally from Liverpool, and Hannah Ido (Newman), originally from North London.

Rewarding study: Limmud, the international network of Jewish learning communities, was awarded a Jewish Unity Prize by President Reuven Rivlin in Jerusalem on Wednesday. “Limmud communities bring together people of all ages and backgrounds to celebrate all things Jewish and dialogue in an inclusive, non-judgmental atmosphere” said Limmud Chairman David Hoffman at the award ceremony, which was held at the President’s Residence. “The Limmud model is also helping to unify Israelis,” he added. Limmud was founded in Britain in 1980, with 80 participants. Today there are 84 Limmud communities, involving 4,000 volunteers in 44 countries, according to the organization. Last year, 40,000 people took part in 74 Limmud events. Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat launched the prize in 2014, together with the families of Naftali Fraenkel, Gil-Ad Shaer and Eyal Yifrah, three teens who were kidnapped and murdered that summer.

Celebrity baseball: Friendship Circle Jerusalem, which brings together volunteers and children with special needs, has announced that its Second Annual Buddy Baseball All Star Game is taking place at Jerusalem’s Kraft Stadium on Sunday. Dean Klassman, the founder of Buddy Baseball, will be coming from Chicago to join the event for the second year running. “The game is played on a disability-enabled baseball field,” Chanie Canterman, the director of Friendship Circle Jerusalem, told Haaretz. “We have signs to cheer on their names, so they know they are a celebrity that day. It’s just a moving experience.” Canterman, a Londoner whose youngest sister has special needs, said she founded the Jerusalem branch after being bombarded by requests from immigrant families who had Friendship circle abroad. For more info or to volunteer, call 073-785-8528.

Rank and File was compiled by Steven Klein.

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