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Editorial & Opinion | Opinion

01/27/2014 - 19:00 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

The Chief Rabbinate of Israel recently made headlines for the wrong reasons once again. Until a recent agreement was reached, it had refused to accept letters from Rabbi Avi Weiss and other American Orthodox rabbis attesting to the Jewishness of congregants seeking to wed in Israel. As a result, numerous organizations and prominent individuals, in Israel and the U.S., each with a plan to reform, weaken, improve, or dismantle the Rabbanut (Chief Rabbinate), stood up for Rabbi Weiss and called on the Rabbanut to accept him. Ultimately, the Rabbanut agreed to accept Rabbi Weiss’ testimony and also to accept automatically any letter of testimony that has been approved by the Rabbinical Council of America, the largest association of Orthodox rabbis in the world.

01/27/2014 - 19:00 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

As a child, I remember wearing silver bracelets so that I could twin with a Jew in Russia, who couldn’t live as a Jew. As a 10-year-old in 1987, I remember attending the Soviet Jewry March on Washington with my parents and their “UJA friends,” and seeing friends of mine from Camp Ramah, realizing, at that moment, what it meant to be a part of the Jewish people. The message was clear: Let Them Out. Retrieve them with a “one-way ticket,” either to the U.S. or to Israel.

01/26/2014 - 19:00 | | Opinion

The term Tikkun Olam, translated as repairing or improving the world, has become today a shorthand phrase for social justice, endorsed by elected officials (President Obama and House Leader Eric Cantor to name just two) and a plethora of Jewish organizations.

01/26/2014 - 19:00 | | Opinion

Dear Rabbi Weiss,

While I was relieved to learn that the Chief Rabbinate of Israel has revoked its claims against you, I have been deeply saddened by the entire episode. But I have not been surprised. In their book, “Leadership on the Line,” Ronald Heifetz and Marty Linsky define leadership as an act that involves “disappointing your own people at a rate they can absorb.” In order to make progress around issues that touch on people’s beliefs and values, it is often necessary to touch on very sensitive issues, challenging people’s understanding of what is true and right.

01/26/2014 - 19:00 | | Opinion

Editor’s Note: Jan. 27 is International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

My father, Josef Rosensaft, decidedly did not want to be in Auschwitz. True, no one did, but my father actually did something about it. 

Repeatedly. 

01/20/2014 - 19:00 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

The Chief Rabbinate of Israel recently made headlines for the wrong reasons once again. Until a recent agreement was reached, it had refused to accept letters from Rabbi Avi Weiss and other American Orthodox rabbis attesting to the Jewishness of congregants seeking to wed in Israel. As a result, numerous organizations and prominent individuals, in Israel and the U.S., each with its own plan to reform, weaken, improve, or dismantle the Rabbanut [Chief Rabbinate], stood up for Rabbi Weiss and called on the Rabbanut to accept him. Ultimately, the Rabbanut agreed to accept Rabbi Weiss’s testimony and also to accept automatically any letter of testimony that has been approved by the Rabbinical Council of America, the largest association of Orthodox rabbis in the world.