St. William of Perth
Catholic Primary School

Canon Close
Rochester
Kent
ME1 3EN

Tel: 01634 404267
office@stwilliamperth.medway.sch.uk

Year 6 - Synagogue Visit

On the 10th March Year 6 visited Chatham Memorial Synagogue to develop their understanding of the Jewish faith and to learn about this place of worship. Here are some photographs and reports about their visit.

 Our Synagogue Visit – Tristan  

Once we arrived at the Synagogue, I didn’t know what to expect but as soon as we entered the synagogue my eyes were stunned with the beauty. The elegant pews bowed down to the intricately decorated Bimah. The colourful stained glass windows mesmerised me and the books were so fascinating to stare at.

Not only did we enjoy ourselves thoroughly but our tour guide Irenna was really knowledgeable and showed us all the interesting facts and objects that play an important role in Jewish religion. Then we were fortunate enough to taste some unleavened bread which Jewish people eat during the time of Pesach. It was extremely simple to make but tasted so glorious in the magical atmosphere.

Finally, Irenna showed us the almighty Torah (Holy books / scrolls). They were covered in majestic diamonds and silk! They gleamed with awe and everyone stood, entranced in a mist of beauty! It was time we left. I had learnt so much in the space of an hour and I can honestly say I was inspired and overwhelmed with the serenity of the Synagogue.

My Visit to the Synagogue - Rebekah

I enjoyed the trip and learnt a lot about the Jewish Faith. Women and girls sit upstairs and all the men and boys would sit downstairs. I saw a sign made of gold next to the Torah scrolls and it said, “This eternal light given in loving memory of Jacob’s shepherd.” The Bimah is raised up so everyone can hear the rabbi speaking, chanting and praying. The Bimah is also in the middle of the church in the Synagogue to show that they are the head of the community.

The Shema is a very important scroll which is found in the Synagogue. In each Torah scroll it contains stories from Moses; the same stories are in the Old Testament in the Bible. I had a great time and learnt so much.

What I learnt at the Synagogue – Ben

The Synagogue we went to was made in 1869. The vibrant enticing stain glass windows caught my attention as soon as we entered. I could feel a sense of importance and holiness in the atmosphere in this serene place. The thing I noticed the most was the Star of David; it was everywhere.

I learnt many interesting facts at the Synagogue. For example: Jewish people cannot have any pictures of God; Synagogue is a Greek word meaning a house where you come to pray, a place of study and a house of assembly and they call a Priest rabbi, which means teacher. As amazing as these facts were, for me, the most interesting fact was that women sat upstairs and men sat downstairs! This is because women might need to leave during a service (as they have many jobs to do) without disturbing the men. I had a great time on the trip.