04/24/2014 | | Staff Writer | The JW Q&A
Jewish Foundation for the Righteous’ Stanlee Stahl: Rescuers “were people like us.”

Stanlee Stahl has been executive vice president of the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous since 1992. Since 1986, the organization has provided $34 million in financial support to more than 2,500 gentiles who rescued Jews during the Holocaust. Currently JFR supports 654 rescuers in 22 countries, with the vast proportion living in Poland, Ukraine, Lithuania, Belarus and Hungary. The foundation also runs a Holocaust education program that has trained more than 400 middle and high school teachers from the U.S. and Eastern Europe since 2000. On the eve of Yom HaShoah, The Jewish Week caught up with Stahl for a wide-ranging discussion on the rescuers she’s met and the impact of the group’s education program. This is an edited transcript.

04/23/2014 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Travel
Palm trees frame the harbor in Avalon, on Catalina Island.  George Medovoy

Avalon, Catalina Island — It’s no more than a short cruise from busy Los Angeles, but once here, you’ll think you’ve sailed to a far-away paradise.

04/23/2014 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Culture View
Ted Merwin

At her bat mitzvah last month at Beth El Temple in Harrisburg, Pa., my daughter Hannah spoke about the concept of hiddur mitzvah, the aesthetic enhancement of Jewish customs. Bathed in the light of the synagogue’s new stained-glass windows depicting Jewish holidays and allegorical representations of biblical figures, Hannah eloquently linked the Torah portion, which dealt with the ancient Israelites’ building of the tabernacle in the desert, with the creation of Jewish art and artifacts in our own day. 

04/18/2014 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World
Rabbi Gerald C. Skolnik

When we think of the challenges of hosting a seder, the physical – the cleaning and cooking – immediately spring to mind. Another challenge is negotiating the tension between the meal’s ritual requirements and the obligation to make the story actually speak to the participants who are there.

04/18/2014 | | Travel Writer | Travel
The quintessentially Gallic streetscapes of Perpignan. Henri Moreau

Overlooked and underrated, the French city of Perpignan reveals its charms to those with the patience to look.

Perpignan, best known as a transit hub for the beaches of the Languedoc-Rousillon, has the misfortune to be located amid a region of surpassing visual splendor and historic import. Were it a city in Hungary or Romania, it would surely be a major draw. But Perpignan’s quintessentially Gallic streetscapes, riverside quays and plethora of medieval architecture are hardly unique in this corner of France.

04/14/2014 | | Special To The Jewish Week | First Person
Merri Ukraincik

For as long as I can remember, Pesach has conjured up the image of a mound of whole walnuts on a white kitchen table. My mother, grandmother, sister and I encircled it, as if sitting around a campfire telling tales. We dismantled the shells with unwieldy nutcrackers, filling three bowls: one with the shards, another with the meats, and the last, with the mortar wrought by a hand-cranked nut grinder.

04/14/2014 | | Staff Writer | The JW Q&A
Benjamin Ish-Shalom: Wants conversions handled by local rabbis, not Chief Rabbinate.

Benjamin Ish-Shalom is president and founder of Beit Morasha in Jerusalem. In 2000, the university founded the Institute for Jewish Studies-The Joint Conversion Institute; Ish-Shalom is its chairman.

04/14/2014 | | Staff Writer | Lens
Lacrosse in motion. Robert Berkenblit

It was a day of blue and white, of orange and green.

On a recent Sunday morning, men’s lacrosse teams from Israel and Ireland met for a “friendly” — sports talk for an exhibition game or match — at Centre Island Beach Park in Bayville, L.I., near the edge of the Long Island Sound.

04/10/2014 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | Tim Boxer
 Sharri Berg and husband Barry Levine with daughter August. Tim Boxer/JW

Roger Ailes, the eminence of Fox News, has been coming to the annual benefit dinner of the Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) ever since he was guest of honor in 2005. Last week he hobbled into the Pierre Hotel with the aid of a cane, which startled Michael Miller, longtime JCRC executive vice president and CEO.