A new Jewish community center has opened in downtown Plymouth amid the increasing antisemitism that has surfaced nationwide since the Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel.
“Especially with what is going on in Israel, people are looking and wanting to be part of a community,” said Rabbi Levi Lezell, who leads Chabad of the South Shore. “This will be an important time to provide a space where people can learn and connect with their Judaism.”
The center recently moved from Hingham to 4 Court St., Lezell said.
“Plymouth is a growing community,” he said. “It’s really been blossoming. There’s a new generation of people moving in, both young and old.”
The center will offer courses, holiday programs, and community gatherings and events. For larger events, it will rent outside space.
Lezell said he wants to offer a pop-up shop for the holidays where people can buy challah bread for Shabbat, menorahs and candles for Hannukah, matzoh and wine for Passover, and honey, honey cakes, and prayer books for Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur.
“People have been traveling to Brookline or wherever it was to get those kinds of things,” said Lezell. “Now, we’ll bring it to them.”
Chabad of the South Shore is not entirely new to Plymouth – it has held a menorah lighting at Plymouth Rock since 2021.
The Plymouth center will offer a course called “Advice for Life” starting Jan. 25. It will explore how Jewish values can offer meaning in everyday life. The course is based on the teachings of the late Orthodox Rabbi Menachem Schneerson, the former leader of the Chabad Lubavitch movement, a Hassidic group. The course is open to all, Lezell said.
The Chabad movement runs more than 3,500 educational centers throughout the world, including in schools, drug rehabilitation centers, homes for the disabled, and synagogues.
“Everyone is welcome,” said Lezell of the Plymouth center. For more information, visit the group’s website.
Fred Thys can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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