Wimbledon & District Synagogue have two Rabbis who job share the role.
Rabbi Sylvia Rothschild is responsible for conversion, youth and pastoral matters, while Rabbi Sheridan takes the lead for cheder, young adults and lifelong learning. Rabbi Sheridan can be found in the office on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, Rabbi Rothschild on Wednesdays and Thursdays. The Rabbis are on duty on alternate weekends and arrange Festival services in a similar manner.
Rabbi Sylvia Rothschild
Rabbi Rothschild grew up in The Bradford Synagogue, the third oldest Reform Synagogue in England, where her family were actively involved. After completing a psychology degree at Manchester University she worked as a psychiatric social worker before entering the Leo Baeck College and gaining semicha in 1987 - a few months after the birth of her daughter. She was the minister of the Bromley Reform Synagogue from 1987 - 2002 and left there to join the Wimbledon Synagogue and to pioneer the model of job sharing in the rabbinate with Rabbi Sybil Sheridan.
Rabbi Rothschild was a Lay Member of the Bromley Research Ethics Committee for many years, and is an Appointed Member of the Standards Committee for the Borough of Bromley, as well as an Appointed Member of the National Information Governance Board for Health and Social Care.
She chaired the Assembly of Rabbis from 1998 - 2003, and answered questions on the website of totallyjewish.com for some years. She has been one of the contributors to the Parashat haShavua column for the Jewish Chronicle.
She is also a trained counsellor and has trained as an Executive Coach.
Sylvia has written extensively on ethical issues, as well as on prayer and on new liturgies. She is known for her creation of a large number of new rituals and prayers for life events, mainly though not exclusively, to mark events in women's lives; She has also written liturgies to help with end of life experiences.
She is married and has three children, two dogs and a cat.
Rabbi Sybil Sheridan
Sybil Sheridan was born in Bolton, Lancashire, and grew up as a member of the Manchester Reform Synagogue. She read Theology and Religious Studies at Cambridge, one of the first two Jews to do so (the other being Sylvia Rothschild’s brother). She then studied at the Leo Baeck College and at the Pardes Institute in Jerusalem, and was ordained as a Rabbi in 1981.
After four years at the Ealing Liberal Synagogue, Rabbi Sheridan took an extended maternity leave to look after her four children, during which time she wrote a book of children’s stories, lectured at the Leo Baeck College, and worked with the Swindon Jewish Community. In 1994 Rabbi Sheridan became Rabbi of the Thames Valley Jewish Community and remained there till her appointment at Wimbledon Synagogue in 2003.
Rabbi Sheridan has edited two books and contributed to a large number of academic publications. She is a major contributor to interfaith dialogue both nationally and internationally, and has strong links to Israel and to the educational conference Limmud. She is the Jewish Chaplain at the University of Roehampton, and Co Chair of the British Friends of Rabbis for Human Rights. Married to Rabbi Dr Jonathan Romain, she is a keen concert, opera and theatre goer, and also enjoys playing tennis, skiing, and walking.
Reade the Rabbi's blogs an Tweets - click the links to read or follow:
Rabbi Sybil's blog - click here
Rabbi's Tweets - click: Follow @sybilsheridan