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Disgrifiad

A correspondence between Leslie Corne, Secretary of the Cardiff New (now Reform) Synagogue and members of the North Western Reform Synagogue, Dr Van der Zyl and Dr Reinhart. The letters concern the Bar Mitzvah of Myer Cohen’s son Jeffrey, dated between 18 February 1949 to 8 March 1949.

The contents of these letters specifically ask Dr Van der Zyl to perform the ceremony as he knows Jeffery. He responds positively to this along with some information of what will happen during the day, for example, reading the Portion of the Law and Haftorah.

Other topics also include a note on the Purim Children’s Party, held on 14 March 1949 and Passover, requesting a minister for Passover dates and if copies of music for the choir. At the end of one letter Dr Van der Zyl writes his expenses for the weekend of 23- 30 January, which were “£4-5-0”.
There is no name at the bottom of some letters but from the contents it is most likely they were written by Leslie Corne in response to Mr Cohen.

The Cardiff Reform Synagogue was founded in 1948 as the Cardiff New Synagogue. The following year, it became a constituent member of the Movement for Reform Judaism. Born in reaction against the more restrictive traditions of the Orthodox Judaism of Cardiff Hebrew Congregation, such as the prohibition of driving on the Sabbath and the ban on interfaith marriages, the new Synagogue appealed to the immigrants who had fled the war-torn Europe, where the Reform movement was already well-established. The congregation worships in a converted Methodist Chapel on Moira Terrace they acquired in 1952.

Sources:
'The History of the Jewish Diaspora in Wales' by Cai Parry-Jones (http://e.bangor.ac.uk/4987);
JCR-UK/JewishGen (https://www.jewishgen.org/jcr-uk/Community/card1/index.htm).

Depository: Glamorgan Archives.

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