Rabbi at large London synagogue ill with coronavirus after Morocco trip


(JTA) — A rabbi at London’s iconic St John’s Wood Synagogue has contracted the coronavirus.

Rabbi Yoni Golker told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency on Friday over the phone that he has had mild symptoms and is feeling better than when they first appeared last week. He is in quarantine isolation in London.

The rabbi visited with the synagogue and Jewish school in Casablanca, Morocco, last week, he confirmed to JTA, before he began displaying symptoms.

Members who were in close contact with Golker in the past two weeks have been advised to self-isolate for a period of two weeks starting from the exposure, the Jewish News reported.

Golker declined to answer any further questions. St John’s Wood Synagogue, an Orthodox institution with 1,400 seats, is aware of the rabbi’s condition but has not shut down services. On Thursday, the synagogue reported having a member who is “seriously ill” from coronavirus.

St John’s Wood Synagogue has been closed for cleaning, but all other synagogues belonging to the United Synagogue umbrella group will remain open for Shabbat services this weekend, a spokesperson told the Jewish News.

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