Steve Lipman

Gay YU Panel Broadens Discussion, Debate

Personal experiences draw big crowd to school’s campus, even as rabbis reaffirm ‘abomination’ of homosexual acts.

12/30/2009
Staff Writer

A standing-room-only public forum last week at Yeshiva University could take the discussion about gay Jews in the Orthodox community from a single meeting hall to the entire movement, focusing on the balance between empathy for individuals and the halachic ban on homosexual activity.

An estimated 600 to 800 people last week attended “Being Gay in the Modern Orthodox World,” a panel discussion on the university’s Washington Heights campus sponsored by YU’s year-old Tolerance Club and its Wurzweiler School of Social Work.

Openly gay Rabbi Steve Greenberg likened the forum to the groundbreaking film “Trembling Before G-d.”

Jews Split On Pius Sainthood Action

Surprise move by Benedict for wartime pope leading to fresh schism among interfaith experts.

12/23/2009
Staff Writer

A cloud of suspicion will hover above the Bishop of Rome when he crosses the Tiber River to visit Rome’s Great Synagogue next month.

Pope Benedict XVI’s planned visit on Jan. 17 to the synagogue — the second in history by the leader of the Roman Catholic Church — will take place in the shadow of renewed controversy over Pope Pius XII, the pontiff during World War II whose ambiguous record has soured Jewish-Catholic relations for four decades.

The Way You Wear Your Hat

Staff Writer
12/08/2009
It was a small kipa, satin white and sky blue, and it was supposed to make a statement about my Jewish identity. I bought it at a Judaica shop in Jerusalem on my first visit to Israel, a 10-day trip for American journalists in late autumn of 1975. Not religiously observant then, I was 25 and not a kipa-wearer outside of synagogue. I decided to wear the yarmulke as a sign of pride, as a statement of Jewish identity, during the time I was in Israel. I clipped it to my head then forgot about it. In Israel, no one notices someone wearing a kipa. On Shabbat, someone noticed.

The KIPP-ing Point

Staff Writer
08/18/2009
On a business visit to Houston three years ago, Israeli real estate agent-turned-educator Eran Dubovi accepted a suggestion from Lee Wunsch, executive director of the city’s Jewish federation. Go see a certain public school in southwest Houston, Wunsch said.

The Age Of Meaning

Staff Writer
10/20/2009
Rabbi Dayle Friedman, author and director of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College’s Hiddur: The Center for Aging and Judaism, has served as a pioneer in the Jewish community’s work with the elderly. She was founding director of chaplaincy services at the Philadelphia Geriatric Center, and a founding member of the National Association of Jewish Chaplains and the Forum on Aging, Religion and Spirituality.

Gay YU Panel Broadens Discussion, Debate

Personal experiences draw big crowd to school’s campus, even as rabbis reaffirm ‘abomination’ of homosexual acts.

12/30/2009
Staff Writer

A standing-room-only public forum last week at Yeshiva University could take the discussion about gay Jews in the Orthodox community from a single meeting hall to the entire movement, focusing on the balance between empathy for individuals and the halachic ban on homosexual activity.

An estimated 600 to 800 people last week attended “Being Gay in the Modern Orthodox World,” a panel discussion on the university’s Washington Heights campus sponsored by YU’s year-old Tolerance Club and its Wurzweiler School of Social Work.

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House Of Seven Siddurs

04/14/2000
Staff Writer
The rabbi’s tour of the sanctuary at Woodlands Community Temple stresses what isn’t there. “No fixed bima,” Rabbi Billy Dreskin says, pointing to the ark on wheels in the eastern corner of the room, flanked by ceiling-high windows—plain panes, no stained-glass — that open to a woodsy street in Greenburgh.“No fixed seating.” Instead, there are several rows of folding chairs, which are rearranged for different services and synagogue events. And, in the pewless space, no sign of prayer books.  

‘He Wasn’t Afraid Of Anything’

03/09/2007
Staff Writer
Leonid Bereslavskiy asks every day, “Where’s Papa?” Yulia Bereslavskiy gets “kind of jealous when I see other kids talking with their fathers.”Riva Bereslavskiy, their grandmother, just cries.Leonid, 5, and Yulia, 9, are brother and sister.

Under One Tent

10/15/1999
Staff Writer
Katrin Yaghoubi wanted to find a synagogue with gemutlichkeit. That’s German for coziness. And it had to have eshtemah. That’s Farsi for community.And a rabbi whose services kept her interest. That’s English for not boring.   It took her almost eight years.An Iranian Jew born in Germany, Yaghoubi now lives in Manhattan but her shul is in Great Neck, home to her mother, one of her three siblings and thousands of other Iranian Jews.  

Thumping His Chess

09/17/1999
Staff Writer
The Schneider family of Hastings-on-Hudson in Westchester is running out of shelf space. The bookcase in their living room is packed with the chess books, in Russian, that Dimitri brought from his native Riga, and the ones in English he bought after the family immigrated to the United States eight years ago.There are the chess sets that Dimitri likes to buy. And the trophies he keeps winning.Dimitri, 14, is the top-ranked player in the country in the U.S.
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