When we created ELELS we wanted to build on and combine the best features of Bimah and Ha-etz - the existing community magazines of Woodford Liberal and Bet Tikvah synagogues. At first we did not have a name for our new magazine - so the first two issues went out as: The Magazine of East London and Essex Synagogue.
As our new community started to settle, so to did a new editorial team for the magazine. They decided to call the magazine HaGesher - The Bridge. It was also decided to give the magazine a new look, one that reflects our new vibrant community. In 2017 we published four issues of our community magazine:
Issue 1 (March) - includes an update from the Co-chairs; a Who's Who guide to the Interim Council; Rabbi David Hulbert on Purim & Pesach; Rabbi Richard Jacobi on Denial & Fake News; Cheder News (including some light painting); and other news from around our community.
Issue 2 (July) - another update from the co-chairs; Rabbi Richard Jacobi on Terrorism & Extremism; Rabbi David Hulbert on those who vote on the losing side of elections; the Collins & Forbes wedding; two different reflections on the World Union for Progressive Judaism; and other news from around our community.
Issue 3 (September) - an editorial on why we choose HaGesher for the magazine name; tributes to Joe Swinburne, Jenny Sclaire & Pearl Miller; an update from co-chairs; Rabbi Richard Jacobi on memories & hopes, an update from the Cheder; a welcome to Student Rabbi Daniela Touati; and other news from around our community.
Issue 4 (December) - an editorial on renewal & rededication; tributes to Sidney Sanders; co-chairs on transitioning from Interim to Elected Council; an update on finding a new home for our community; a look back at the legacy & history of Perrymans Farm Road; articles by both of our Rabbis; articles on the HHD & other recent festivals; Cheder update; and other community news including the recent communal visit to Budapest.
Work has already begun planning for 2018, when we hope to build on the lessons learnt to date, to continue to produce a lively vibrant and interesting HaGesher magazine.