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.
Last January, dozens of well-heeled New Yorkers gathered at Manhattan's Waldorf-Astoria to raise money for the archbishop of New York's last gesture toward the Jewish community he held so dear.
The archbishop's birthday dinner raised $1.5 million for the establishment of the John Cardinal O'Connor Distinguished Chair in Hebrew and Sacred Scripture at St. Joseph's Seminary, the Westchester institution that trains future priests. O'Connor wanted to teach seminarians greater respect for the Jewish roots of Christianity.
American-born settler Jack Tytell is charged with multiple murders and hate crimes. A look into his upbringing in the U.S. reveals some surprises.
Special to the Jewish Week
His fellow students at Akiva Hebrew Day School, a Modern Orthodox yeshiva in the Detroit suburb of Southfield, Mich., had Jack Tytell pegged.
He was “creepy,” one remembered, someone with “crazy eyes.” Another recalled Tytell walking through Akiva’s halls acting out imaginary combat scenes and jumping over tripwires that existed in his head only.
As their “Last Will and Testament” in the Akiva Class of ’90 yearbook, his classmates left him an “Uzi and a grenade ... and a Valium.”
Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.), the third highest-ranking Senate Republican, has agreed to be the point man for the Jewish community on the emerging issue of seeking justice for hundreds of thousands of Jews displaced from Arab lands following the creation of the State of Israel.
This follows meetings with a coalition of Jewish organizational leaders engaged in a campaign contending that along with Palestinian refugees, the rights of Jewish refugees from Arab lands must also be addressed by the international community.
On the eve of Yom Kippur, a dispute between two groups of Jews leads to a divider being placed at Judaism’s holiest accessible site, the western retaining wall of Herod’s Second Temple.
But Muslim sheiks, who “own” the Wall, demand the divider be removed, calling it an unacceptable alteration to their site. They suspect that the Jews are trying to find a way to give the Wall the status of a synagogue “as a first step in taking it over.”
‘Now Mount Sinai was altogether in smoke, for the Lord had come down upon it in fire.’ Exodus 19:18
It’s not every millennium that God descends onto a mountain for a chat with one of his creations.
In fact, according to Jewish tradition, it’s only happened once, about 3,250 years ago, on a modest mountain sometimes called Sinai.
For a man witnessing a debacle in real time, Rev. Louis Sheldon, a leader of the Christian Right political movement, sounded amazingly sanguine Tuesday night: even as an early AP exit poll indicated that almost one-third of white Evangelicals chose a Democrat for Congress.
"We know that in America the people are with us," insisted the founder and chairman of the Traditional Values Coalition, one of the largest groups in the Christian right. "They're just confused."
The latest skirmish in the halls of Jewish academia has, surprisingly, nothing to do with Israel. But the new discord over academic grants made by the Posen Foundation concerns a charged topic just the same — the growing trend of teaching about Jewish culture through an exclusively secular lens.
A free speech dispute over campus speakers has continued to roil Brandeis University in the wake of controversy over its hosting of former president and Israel critic Jimmy Carter.
Brandeis’ president waded personally into it this week, voicing hope that right-wing Middle East policy advocate Daniel Pipes would soon lecture there — but issuing no such statement for Norman Finkelstein, a left-wing academic students have also invited.
Temple Emanu-El has granted its cantor, who is awaiting trial on charges that he sexually abused his young nephew, a paid leave of absence, The Jewish Week has learned.
A letter sent to members last week from Robert Bernhard, the temple's president, said Cantor Howard Nevison has been on leave since Feb. 20, the day of his arrest, when he was "relieved of all duties."
A source connected with the synagogue said it is a paid leave "because this is not punitive."