Blogs

A 'Bar Mitzvah Twin' Found Through A New Digital Archive

Nostalgia is trending on the web and the Detroit Jewish News's digital archive, launched in November, is a prime example. I am famously fond of my hometown, where I now serve as a rabbi, so poking around on the site is fun for me, but the archive also connected me with someone I have longed to meet since my Bar Mitzvah and thought I never would.

The author found mentions of his grandparents in the Detroit Jewish News' digital archive. Image courtesy Detroit Jewish News

Silent Lessons: Hiking With Israel's Association Of The Deaf

In LOTEM, we guide groups of people with special needs in nature and after a year, I can say wholeheartedly that I have gained experience working with a wide range of populations. 

Tali Nahir

Two Worlds, Plus A Few More: Benjy Fox-Rosen’s "Tsvey Veltn"

The phrase “Two Worlds” comes from the late Mordechai Gebirtig’s poem of the same name. It refers not, as you might expect, to the old world and the new, but to those of the living and the dead.

Benjy Fox-Rosen and his bass. Peter Blacksberg

Yitro: Moses Shows Us How To Celebrate

After the Israelites crossed the Red Sea and emerged victorious in the war against Amalek, Moses’ father-in-law Jethro joined them in the wilderness. Our Torah portion recounts how he was welcomed by the congregation:

“Aaron and all the elders of Israel came to eat bread with Moses’ father-in-law before God.” (Exodus 18, 12.) The commentator Rashi wonders “Where was Moses?” He concludes that Moses was occupied himself with serving the meal (rather than eating with Aaron, Jethro and the elders.) One can imagine that Moses also saw to the preparation of the meal.

Rabbi Michael Levy

Gates: Bibi Is ‘Ungrateful Ally’

Add former U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates to the list of world leaders who consider Bibi Netanyahu insufferable.

The list includes at least two American presidents, a British prime minister, a German chancellor and a French president.

Those countries are Israel’s closest allies, and the problem can’t be shrugged off by dismissing those leaders as anti-Israel or insensitive to Israel’s concerns, as Netanyahu’s defenders do so reflexively. Instead, they should be asking why their guy has so much trouble getting along with so many foreign leaders. 

Incitement: Obstacle To Peace Or Excuse?

If incitement were the major barrier to peace that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claims it is, there would never have been peace with Egypt.

Incitement is the work of hatemongers and ideologues seeking to prevent peace, and those who let them get away with it do so either because they are looking for excuses to fail or because they are too weak to lead.

Anne Frank And Her Disciples

With apologies to Nathan Englander, what should we look at when we look at Anne Frank?  Faith & Form, the new exhibit at The Anne Frank Center USA provides some answers.  Aligned with the Center’s mission of using the diary and spirit of Anne Frank as tools to educate about the dangers of racism, anti-Semitism and discrimination, the exhibit features multi-media work by 21 artists, all members of the Jewish Art Salon, addressing those issues in a range of styles and expression. 

Ash Fitzgerald, Passing Through (A Golem's Journey).

What Did I Learn On My Winter Vacation?

On the first day my kids went back to school after two weeks of vacation, they both wrote journal entries about what they did. Here's my journal entry.

National Jewish Book Awards Announced

Yossi Klein Halevi’s “Like Dreamers” was named the 2013 Jewish Book of the Year by the Jewish Book Council. The National Jewish Book Awards were announced in 17 categories, with Klein and other Israelis winning key prizes.

An Amazing Way To Start The Week: Havdalah At B'nai Jeshurun

This past Saturday, I attended services designed for individuals with disabilities and their families to conclude Shabbat at Congregation B’nai Jeshurun on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.

Frances Victory
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