Rabbi Sybil Sheridan
Chair of the Assembly of Reform Rabbis UK
Rabbi Sybil Sheridan grew up in Bolton, a member of Manchester Reform Synagogue. She studied theology and religious studies in Cambridge, the first of two non-Christians in the faculty. After graduation she began studies at Leo Baeck College, and spent two years in Jerusalem, receiving semichah (ordination) in 1981. Her first post was at Ealing Liberal Synagogue and she joined Wimbledon and District Synagogue in 2003.
Sybil has written and edited books including 'Hear Our Voice: Women Rabbis tell their Stories' and, with Rabbi Sylvia Rothschild, 'Taking up the Timbrel: the Challenge of Creating Ritual for Jewish Women Today'. Sybil has a long experience of interfaith dialogue, and is an advisor on Catholic Jewish relations for the Bishops Conference for England and Wales. She has presented Muslim Jewish text study seminars with Sheikha Halima Krausen for the last ten years and was Jewish Chaplain to Roehampton University.
Attending Limmud almost from its inception, she was part of the team that created the chavruta project for Jewish one-to-one learning. She is on the editorial committee of the Jewish feminist magazine 'Nashim', and was recently appointed to serve on the Bet Debora management committee which runs conferences in Europe for Jewish women leaders. With a passionate interest in music, Sybil was responsible for creating ‘Shirei hat’fillot’ the music book accompanying our new Siddur and is now beginning work on music for the High Holy Days.
A sabbatical five years ago took her to Ethiopia where she taught at a Jewish School. This led to an involvement in the plight of those Ethiopian Jews who are unable to move to Israel and who live in extreme poverty. She formed the charity Meketa in order to support them. A keen social activist, she volunteers at Hammerson House and with the Merton Night Shelter and sits on their management committee.
Sybil is married to Rabbi Jonathan Romain and they have four adult sons.