Two rabbis helped comprise the multi-ethnic make-up of a “moving” community vigil held for the victims of the Grenfell Tower disaster on Thursday.
One month after the tragedy, hundreds of people gathered in front of the building’s charred shell, gathering to pay their respects alongside survivors, relatives, friends, volunteers and community leaders.
Representing the Jewish community were Rabbi Dr. Moshe Freedman of New West End Synagogue in Bayswater and Rabbi Abraham Lavi of the Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue in Holland Park. Christian bishops and Sunni Muslim imams were also present, as were the religious leaders of Catholic and other communities.
After readings by community members, including young Muslim girls, candles were lit by the audience, as a local Gospel choir sang and people left messages in a glass bowl.
The event was organised by the Department of Communities and Local Government, and described as “incredibly moving” by Laurence Julius, treasurer of Holland Park Synagogue.
“Every times I see that tower it sends a chill right through me, when you think how people suffered there, and all the issues,” he said. “However, it has also brought people together, and the barriers between communities seem to have come down. The West Indian community in particular has been tremendous, but little-reported.”