Like buds on a tree, new Passover Haggadot are a sure sign of spring. The most-published book in the Jewish community, the Haggadah appears in a variety of forms every year, appealing to the scholar and the beginner, the artist and the historian, the child and the senior citizen.
Belfast — Behind the concrete walls and ongoing tensions that divide Catholic and Protestant populations, a tiny but lingering Jewish community read the Megillah and cranked groggers last Thursday here in the capital of Northern Ireland.
Capped in a golden speckled party hat, wrapped in a long black coat and sporting a characteristically chasidic beard, Rabbi Menachem Brackman, 26, led Purim services at the Belfast Hebrew Congregation.
Come September, several dozen Orthodox Columbia University students, men and women, will be paid to learn Torah near their Upper West Side campus. The yeshiva will be housed at Ramat Ora, a revitalized Orthodox synagogue on West 110th Street, several blocks from the university's main campus on West 116th Street.
Already, 47 Columbia undergraduates have enrolled for the intensive, 10-hour-a-week program offering classes in Talmud and Torah, in addition to their regular secular studies during the academic year. Men and women will study separately in the program.