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IN THE NEWS
TOUR OF THE MONTH
ON THIS DAY IN LONDON
18th February 1917 Born today: Phyllis Calvert, London, actress (Man in Grey)
18th February 1901 Born today: Reginald Sheffield, London England, actor (Second Chance)
18th February 1775 Born today: Thomas Girtin, London, artist/watercolorist
Enfield Synagogue Spirits
The scene of a suspected long term haunting.
Location: Wellington Rd, Enfield, Middlesex
Description: In 2009 the rabbi here at Enfield and Winchmore Hill synagogue recently moved into the accommodation attached to the synagogue when he found he had been joined by an unseen force capable of opening windows, as well as knocking at doors and making other inexplicable noises.
Corroboration for the presence of a spirit has come from members of the synagogue's congregation, who say they have noticed the spectral activity before.
The ghost was believed to be that of the rabbi who founded the synagogue and who died 40 years ago.
The problem was eventually referred to the Rabbinical Centre of Europe, then all the way to the Chief Rabbi of Israel, Shlomo Amar.
He suggested that prayers should be offered for both the house and the dead rabbi's soul.
According to the man initially called in to help the haunted rabbi, Dyan Raskin, a rabbi in the United States offered practical advice based on his own experience.
A man contacted him about a haunting in an office and the rabbi told him - and this is Jewish law - that no chimney, window or door should be completely sealed off, so spirits are allowed to move in and out.
This particular man discovered that there was a sealed window and once he opened it up, the problem went away.
However, a spokesman for the Enfield synagogue now says that the haunting might have simply been a case of an old story being blown up out of proportion.
For Anglican priests the deliverance ministry usually takes the form of talking and praying, although the priest might also talk to a doctor for an assessment of the haunted person's state of mind, without their permission.
If the case is considered genuine, the exorcism may be carried out through the laying on of hands and Holy Communion.
According to the Chairman of the board of the Synagogue, Alan Sless, about 30 years ago a visiting psychic claimed to have sensed spirits in the house. In addition, another rabbi of the synagogue, claimed to have felt in the house the spirits of prominent departed synagogue members and that of the deceased founding Minister Reverend Lewin.