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Forever Family

Leah Gebber

Webster defines “family” as a group of persons of common ancestry. Yet the concept of ancestry need not be limited to one or two generations. What happens when a group of people discover family ties that stretch back over thousands of years?

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Well before Seed, Birthright, Discovery, Bagel Breakfasts, and Sizzling Summer Barbecues, a new concept in Jewish education was spearheaded. Family Week — a week-long residential program aimed to enrich participants’ Jewish knowledge and education. It was geared to everyone, from frum to frei — an eclectic mix of Anglo-Jewish families, many of whom attended United Synagogues.

Launched by Michael Cohen with the help of Richard Rosten, of the London Board of Jewish Adult Education (the educational arm of the United Synagogue), it was soon taken over entirely by Michael Cohen and Bobby Hill, themselves sought-after international educators and talmidei chachamim, as well as executive directors of the London Board. It was then that Family Week took on a more overtly kiruv-oriented character. And that’s when the legend began.

For close to eighteen years, families met, forging deeper and deeper ties with each other, their mentors, and their heritage.


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