Leaders of the three main streams of Judaism in America told a group of visiting Israeli Knesset members last week that denominational divisions are less important to them than their common commitment to educate and inspire American Jews.
Gennadiy Elikman came with his family to Chicago from Moldova, formerly a part of the Soviet Union, as a teenager in 1999. He was immediately enrolled at the Ida Crown Jewish Academy, a Modern Orthodox day school, knowing “nothing, zero” about Judaism, he says. But he has a vivid memory of being given a Torah to hold. “I didn’t know what it was but my hands began to shake — it was a powerful feeling.”
President Obama is getting beat up pretty bad lately — from the likes of Russian President Vladimir Putin, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and Syrian President Bashar Assad, who are testing his foreign policy moxie. Also from much of the press, world opinion and national polls, for not standing up to the above, and for projecting a sense of weakness from the leader of the world’s most powerful nation.
Financial advisers agree that we should diversify our investments. “Spread the money around,” we’re told, “don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” Yet when it comes to investing in the Jewish future, our largest sources of wealth are doing the opposite of what they preach.
Miami Beach, Fla. — “This room has the key to solve the crises” facing the Jewish community, asserted Andres Spokoiny, president of the Jewish Funders Network, speaking to the more than 350 members of the group here this week at its three-day annual international conference, its largest ever in the U.S.
Washington, D.C. — A black revivalist minister leads thousands of people, who are out of their seats and clapping their hands, in a rousing spiritual and praises the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the traditionally pro-Israel lobby; Latinos and African-Americans describe their love for the Jewish state; 2,300 high school and college students give full voice to their solidarity with Jerusalem; and Democratic and Republican leaders of Congress outdo each other in expressing their unyielding commitment to the people and state of Israel.