Five New Rabbis Ordained

Leo Baeck College ordained five new rabbis in a service held at the Liberal Jewish Synagogue on 7 July 2024. More than 250 people attended in person with a further approximately 100 watching live on Zoom.

The rabbis ordained were:

  • Daisy Rose Bogod
  • Eleanor Davis
  • Martina Yehudit Loreggian
  • Matthew Jeremy Turchin
  • Dr Jeannette Nicola Hannah Feuchtwang-Foy

Rabbi Daisy Bogod spent much of her childhood sleeping on synagogue floors as part of LJY-Netzer. She studied English Literature at University, and worked as an educator and teacher in several Progressive communities before commencing her studies at Leo Baeck College. For her rabbinic dissertation, she wrote about rabbinic work through the lens of feminist disability theory and her experiences as an ambulant wheelchair user. Daisy is committed to building communities with social justice and liberation at their hearts.

Rabbi Eleanor Davis began as a flute and piano teacher before moving to work in arts administration and settling in London with her husband Robert; she came to Leo Baeck College via many years of Rosh Chodesh groups and teaching in adult Jewish education.  As a student rabbi, Eleanor travelled around the UK and Ireland and now looks forward to settling in one community, ideally serving a congregation where she can continue to develop her interest in ritual, creativity and learning.

Rabbi Nicola Feuchtwang entered the rabbinic training programme at Leo Baeck College after a long career as an NHS paediatrician, as well as a lifetime of involvement in varied roles at Alyth Synagogue and the wider Jewish community.  She is now a (part-time) member of the rabbinic team at Alyth, looking forward to new challenges there and elsewhere.

Rabbi Martina Loreggian was a project manager for seventeen years before embarking on rabbinical studies. Born in Milan, and as the first Italian woman to be ordained as a rabbi, she plans to maintain part of her rabbinate in Italy where she hopes to contribute to the development of Italian Progressive Judaism, particularly for communities in the North. Having settled in London, she also plans to work for UK communities, infusing them with her passion for education and pastoral care.

Rabbi Matt Turchin began his studies at Leo Baeck College following a career in the US as a classroom teacher and reading specialist with Master’s Degrees in Elementary Education and Literacy. While preparing for the rabbinate, Matt served for two years as the Head Teacher of Rimon, the religion school of the Liberal Jewish Synagogue, before spending his final two years of study interning at the West London Synagogue, where he has accepted a position as Assistant Rabbi beginning in July 2024. Matt is excited to continue living in London with his wife, Avi Green, and their daughter, Edith.

Giving the Ordination address, Cassy Sachar, Senior Librarian, said:

“Mazal Tov. What joy to be among the first to greet you by your illustrious title. To be the kol sason vkol simcha, the voice of happiness and joy we usually hear around the chuppah. That there are five new rabbis in the world and that you extraordinary people are those rabbis is surely reason for rejoicing in the streets as the Sheva Brachot describe.”

“Today’s rabbinate is a serious profession. And it must be love to sustain you through the intensive five year programme that qualifies you to decide and to judge. You have excelled in your academic studies and applied the same insight and rigour to your vocational learning. So that now you can take on your roles as leaders and teachers, activists and scholars, politician, fundraiser, counsellor, sweet singer, mystic, peacemaker – the myriad things a professional rabbi might be.“

“One of the most fundamental experiences of change in Torah is the journey from slavery to freedom. The Exodus narrative illustrates collective change, showing the transformation of a group of individuals into a people. The community is built through their shared experience. And you dear rabbis belong to some extraordinary communities. As of now, you are part of the community of rabbis stretching back to Moshe Rabbeinu that have been beloved and hectored by Jewish communities for millennia. You have been part of the nourishing, excitable community of Leo Baeck students, as well as your congregations and the wider College community: the village it takes to raise a rabbi.”

The service was conducted by Rabbi Igor Zinkov of the LJS and Cantor Tamara Wolfson of Edgware and Hendon Reform Synagogue.

Rabbi Dr Deborah Kahn-Harris, Principal of Leo Baeck College and Rabbi Dr Charles Middleburgh, Dean of Leo Baeck College also took part.

  • Rabbi Daisy Bogod was ordained by Rabbi Charley Baginsky, CEO of Liberal Judaism.
  • Rabbi Eleanor Davis was ordained by Rabbi Danny Smith, Emeritus Senior Minister of Edgware and Hendon Reform Synagogue.
  • Rabbi Nicola Feuchtwang was ordained by Rabbi Josh Levy, CEO of the Movement for Reform Judaism.
  • Rabbi Martina Loreggian was ordained by Rabbi Mark Solomon, Rabbi of Edinburgh Liberal Jewish Community and of Leicester Progressive Jewish Community and Senior Lecturer in Rabbinic Literature at Leo Baeck College.
  • Rabbi Matt Turchin was ordained by Rabbi Alexandra Wright, Senior Rabbi of Liberal Jewish Synagogue and President of Liberal Judaism.

Ordination certificates were presented by Rabbi Dr Deborah Kahn-Harris, Principal of Leo Baeck College and Professor David Simon, Chair of the Board of Governors of Leo Baeck College.

The Ark was opened by Rabbi Anna Wolfson, co-chair of the Conference of Liberal Rabbis and Cantors, and Rabbi Kath Vardi, co-chair of the Assembly of Reform Rabbis and Cantors.

Leo Baeck College is the UK’s only Progressive Jewish rabbinic seminary, training rabbis for Liberal, Masorti and Reform congregations in the UK and abroad. Its five-year rabbinic postgraduate programme is known for its depth and intensity.

More information on the rabbinic programme can be found here.

Photos are by Zoe Norfolk.