Shabbat is a day set apart by Jewish law from the working week. Family time and spiritual pursuits are emphasised and any weekday activities associated with work are prohibited. This includes carrying items outside our property.
An Eruv allows us to follow the same rules, both in the home, and outside the home within the Eruv. It becomes one big private area, thus allowing all the activities allowed in the home during Shabbat, outside.
An Eruv makes Shabbat observance more pleasant in many ways. They are especially helpful to families with young children who want to use a buggy outside their home on Shabbat, and to people who use a wheelchair or walking frame. Others will find it useful to be able to carry house keys, reading glasses or books, hats and shoes.
Before Eruvim were developed, families with young children and the infirm were house-bound each Shabbat. Many couples who had children too young to walk to synagogue, or people who found walking distances unaided difficult, could not attend a Shabbat service together, nor a kiddush or simcha. Grandparents are now able to host their younger grandchildren on Shabbat. Shabbat events are accessible to all families – young and old, mobile and less mobile. Everyone can now join in the Shabbat religious and social life of the community.