Rabbi Kath joined us in 2017 following ordination from Leo Baeck College and she holds an MA in Rabbinic Theology. Rabbi Kath is an experienced leader having worked previously in mental health and as a senior manager in the NHS. She was recently awarded Chartered Manager status by the Institute for Chartered Managers as part of her studies for an MPA in Faith Leadership with the University of Birmingham. Rabbi Kath and her husband Meir have five children and one grandchild.
Rabbi Kath says, “Previously ethnic identity was sufficient reason to join a community and this is fast becoming no longer the case. Synagogue membership and community involvement is one of a number of possibilities for peoples’ energy and resources as we expand our expressions of ‘Jewishness’ and what it means to ‘be’ Jewish. Community is, at long last, becoming increasingly diverse. This is not without its challenges as norms shift. We at NWSS are welcoming this challenge as we work together to build models of Jewish community that work for wider groups of Jews and those who love them. How we welcome and support one another therefore is be fundamental to future community thriving. It is our ability and willingness to respond with creativity, agility and confidence that will be central to our future flourishing.”
Asked how she sees her work as a Rabbi, Rabbi Kath says, “I see building diverse and inclusive community as the foundation of a rabbi’s work. Religious leadership extends far beyond the synagogue sanctuary and the conducting of religious rite. My religious leadership is fundamentally grounded in walking alongside the community and individuals as they figure out what being Jewish in a contemporary world can mean – to them. It is being prepared to think outside the box, and supporting others as they do so. It is working to co-create spaces of engagement and belonging that reflect the wide variety of human expression and need. It is building spaces where all can be seen in their uniqueness and where their gifts are honoured and valued. It is coming alongside when times are tough. It is being unafraid to celebrate and express joy. And most of all it is about being bold, and brave.”
Rabbi Kath is our fourth permanent Rabbi and she follows in a proud NWSS tradition of working with newly ordained clergy.