Rabbi Emanuel Rackman, a towering figure in the Modern Orthodox community who long before it was fashionable fought for women unable to get Jewish divorces and who was instrumental in founding The Jewish Week, died here Monday. He was 98 and died of natural causes.
The most memorable incident in the life of 16-year-old Oopsie took place last year in a stranger’s hospital room in Israel.
Oopsie is the non-de-plume of Zachy Adler, a yeshiva high school student from Woodmere, L.I., who, as a clown outfitted with makeup, red foam-rubber nose and floppy ears, entertains kids in hospitals and senior citizens in nursing homes in both Israel and the United States. Visiting Tel Aviv’s Tel HaShomer Hospital with a group of fellow young clowns from the New York area, he noticed a sad-looking girl sitting alone in an open room.
Despite objections by U.S. law enforcement officials, an Israeli court this week approved an unusual $3 million bail agreement for the founder of the chasidic New Square community, who is fighting extradition on charges he stole tens of millions of dollars in federal education and housing aid.
A new congregation started last month in the Philadelphia area, just in time for the High Holy Days. The service featured a menorah, a Torah and references to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, not to mention Moses.
It also featured references to Jesus and salvation.
While there have been no shortage of attempts by Christian groups like Jews for Jesus and Hebrew Christians to sponsor religious events blending two clashing theologies in the attempt to attract unaffiliated and intermarried Jews, this congregation, called Avodat Yisrael (Servant of Israel), is unique.
Two thumbs down. That was the consensus of a group of horrified Jewish interfaith and community leaders after watching a rough cut of Mel Gibson's controversial "The Passion."
It was the first mainstream Jewish group to screen the Hollywood star's gory recounting of the trial and death of Jesus.
Inside the third-floor conference hall, Cardozo Law School officials beamed with pride as Nobel Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu accepted a peace award sponsored by the school, an affiliate of Yeshiva University.
But outside the hall, a group of students protested the selection by fellow students of Archbishop Tutu as the fourth recipient of the International Advocate for Peace Award, labeling him an anti-Semite and opponent of Israel.
"Anti-Semite on campus," called out Cardozo student Yishai Fleisher, a bearded man sporting a yarmulke and tzitizit.
Some 15 years ago, while there were still high hopes for the Oslo peace process, I interviewed John Wallach, founder of Seeds for Peace.
His program bringing Arab and Jewish kids together for leadership training retreats and conflict resolution studies, a worthy and laudable undertaking, was a few years old at the time and Wallach was thrilled that a group of his alumni got to sit on the dais as Yitzchak Rabin and Yasir Arafat signed papers and shook hands, raising what would shortly turn out to be false hopes around the world.
The Jewish Week introduces a feature during the current economic crisis that will advise readers about saving money and spending it wisely. The paper welcomes suggestions: contact Steve Lipman at (212) 921-7822, ext. 236; firstname.lastname@example.org.
The biblical obligation to give to charity does not decrease during a recession, but one’s ability to give certainly may. Tithing, donating ten percent of your income, may not be possible if you have lost your job or retirement savings.
The New York Police Department is planning to put its officers through a new police tolerance training center being launched in Manhattan next year by the Los Angeles-based Simon Wiesenthal Center, The Jewish Week has learned.
Police Commissioner Howard Safir has held several discussions with Wiesenthal Center founder Rabbi Marvin Hier about using its Tools for Tolerance program to sensitize the nation's largest police force, which has been rocked by a series of tragic incidents involving ethnic minorities.