Martin van den Bergh

Rabbi Dr Martin van den Bergh,
B.Ed, MA, PhD


  • Semicha (Rabbinic Ordination) from the Shehebar Sephardic Center in Jerusalem in 1983

  • B.Ed from Manchester Polytechnic (New Manchester Metropolitan University in 1977

  • M.A. with Merit in Healthcare Chaplaincy from Leeds University in 2000

  • PhD on Patient-Centred Spiritual Care from a Jewish Perspective from Leeds Beckett University in 2015.

  • Born in Holland

  • Grew up in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe)

  • Came first to London in 1969

  • Married to Anna Leon in 1978

  • Two children and eight grandchildren

Martin van den Bergh
incorporating Yiftach Consultants & Yiftach Net on Pastoral Care
About me:

My experiences of Pastoral Care started when I was Assistant Rabbi in 1974, when I would regularly visit a woman whose son was murdered. My chaplaincy work began 1983 when I became Rabbi of  what was then Withington Congregation of Spanish & Portuguese Jews. In 1986 I became Chairman of the Greater Manchester Chaplaincy Board and oversaw Jewish Chaplaincy services for NHS and private hospitals and prisons in the greater Manchester area and the North West of England.

On my move to London in 1994 to become Rabbi of Wembley United Synagogue, I was also appointed Senior Hospital Chaplain of the Visitation Committee and was responsible for the appointment, training and mentoring of Jewish chaplains in NHS hospitals in Greater London. I also played a key role in the wider provision of healthcare chaplaincy, which led to my becoming the second Chairman of what was then the Multi-Faith Group for Healthcare Chaplaincy and advised on the publication of the 2013 NHS Guidance for Chaplaincy.

My interest in healthcare chaplaincy, led me to gaining an MA at Leeds University (2000) on the subject and a PhD on "Patient-Centred Spiritual Care from a Jewish Perspective." from Leeds Beckett University (2015).

In addition I have held Rabbinic positions in Hong Kong and London, and am currently the Rabbi of Childwall Synagogue in Liverpool, although I now normally live in Israel.