Rabbi's hints for Mrs Thatcher
Mrs Margaret Thatcher, the Conservative Party leader, admits that she picks up ideas and phrases for her speeches.
One of her sources is Rabbi Frank Hellner, at Finchley Progressive Synagogue, who spoke about people never making deals with ideals when Mrs Thatcher and other dignitaries attended the annual civic service at his synagogue.
Mrs Thatcher said afterwards that she had found the rabbi's sermon a timely and moving warning on the danger of compromising with principles.
She said she had heard Rabbi Hellner speak on many occasions and had never failed to pick up a phrase that subsequently proved useful in her political life.
Mrs Thatcher, in her role as MP for Finchley and Friern Barnet, was a principal guest at the Saturday morning service.
The Mayor and Mayoress Alderman and Mrs Bill Hart, were supported by many aldermen and councillors, Jew and non-Jew alike.
The Deputy Mayor, Councillor Mrs Beryl Franklin, and the leader of the council, Councillor Andrew Pares, were among the congregation.
At a kiddush after the service, the chairman of the synagogue council, Mr Lionel King Lassman, presented the Mayor with a copy of the Service of the Heart, the prayer book published by the Union of Liberal and Progressive Synagogues.
The Mayor said he had been to a number of synagogues in his year of office, and welcomed the opportunity to show the regard in which the borough held its Jewish community.
Mr King Lassman presented the union's High Holyday prayer book. Gate of Repentance, to Mrs Thatcher, and suggested to her that she would now have an opportunity to discover for herself what so many absent members of the House of Commons would be doing during a three-line whip called on the Day of Atonement.
Mrs Thatcher referred to a copy of Service of the Heart which she had received on a previous visit to Finchley Progressive Synagogue.