Chief Rabbi Says Donisthorpe is a Credit to UK Jewry

Chief Rabbi Mirvis took Donisthorpe Hall to his heart when he visited the care home on his three-day visit to the city.

Rabbi Mirvis explored the home and unveiled a plaque to herald the soon-to-be completed Trudi Moss functions suite.

Trudi, who died last year, was a volunteer who provided weekly entertainment for residents over a thirty year period, and Rabbi Mirvis paid tribute to her: “She was a lovely person and gave herself to others, giving them a lot of joy.”

He said Trudi was a giver and “when you give, it bounces back to you. She was that kind of person who got most in life by giving of herself.”

He felt honoured to unveil the plaque and said the suite will be a wonderful additional feature for Donisthorpe Hall.

After Chairman Andrew Brown gave a potted history of the home Rabbi Mirvis met staff and residents and was taken to see a forthcoming state-of-the-art sun-room.

Decked out in a Caribbean setting, with cocktail bar, tropical scenery and the sounds of splashing waves, the facility has special light sources that replicate the beneficial elements of the sun.

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis with Donisthorpe's Chairman of Trustee's Andrew Brown in the Sun Room
Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis with Donisthorpe’s Chairman of Trustee’s Andrew Brown in the Sun Room

Rabbi Mirvis said he was genuinely thrilled to be at the home. “This is in fact a key element of my visit to Leeds and I feel honoured to meet you all.”

Along with the ┬ámagnificent features he said he was impressed with the people who ran the home, “dedicating so much energy and effort in such a selfless manner” and impressed too with the donors who enable the facility to keep going.

“I am also impressed with the neshamah, because as Jewish people it’s not only the food and the bricks and the physical features of the home that counts — the most important part is the soul of the home.

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis meets Wolfe Levi, a resident of Donisthorpe Hall
Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis meets Wolfe Levi, a resident of Donisthorpe Hall

“That is what Yiddishkeit is about.”

He described the home’s synagogue as “a real gem.”

“It warms my heart to see such a beautiful shul and to know that it is used on a regular basis, and also to know that the food is prepared under strict supervision of the Beth Din.

“You are running a facility here with a true, traditional Jewish ethos and are a great credit to the UK Jewish community. I’m grateful for the opportunity to meet so many lovely people.”


by John Fisher