Rabbi Gershom Sizomu

Rabbi Gershom Sizomu

Rabbi Gershom Sizomu is a Be’chol Lashon Rabbinic Fellow and the spiritual leader of the Abayudaya Jews of Uganda. Gershom is the current leader of the 100-year old Abayudaya community of almost 2,000 Jews living in rural villages in Eastern Uganda. He is the grandson of community elder “Rabbi” Samson and lives near the Moses Synagogue in the village of Nabagogye, which he and others from the community’s early 1980s “Kibbutz movement” built with their own hands. Their goal has been to gather what was left of the Abayudaya community back together after the devastating reign of Idi Amin Dada ended in 1979.

As a visionary leader, Gershom’s dream was to attend a rabbinic seminary to better understand ancient and modern egalitarian Judaism and bring the Ugandan community intomainstream Jewish life. Gershom was awarded a Be’chol Lashon Fellowship in 2003 to attend the five-year Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University in Los Angeles. He returned to Uganda in 2008 as the first native-born black rabbi in Sub-Saharan Africa and opened a Yeshiva to train African teachers and rabbis to serve their ancient and emerging Jewish communities. In 2016, Gershom became the first Jew ever elected to Uganda’s parliament.

As a member of the Be’chol Lashon Speakers Bureau, Gershom travels to the United States every year as an ambassador for the Abayudaya and other emerging communities in Africa.

Contact

You can reach Gershom by email or our contact form.

Articles

Modern Maccabees: An African Hanukkah Story

Modern Maccabees: An African Hanukkah Story

12/07/2015
This year, Hanukkah has special meaning for the Abayudaya Jews of Uganda. It is a story of the few against the many. It is a story that is ancient but also new.
Hanukkah Light for Women in Uganda

Hanukkah Light for Women in Uganda

12/15/2014
More than anything Nalugya Rehema wanted to be a mother.
A Modern Passover Miracle

A Modern Passover Miracle

03/25/2014
This modern Passover Miracle story is perfect for sharing with friends and family at your Seder.