A Rabbi's World

12/02/2015 - 19:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

Around the time when smoking was officially labeled a serious health hazard, one of the first of many television commercials was produced to try and convince people to quit. It featured a father and young child outside on a beautiful spring day, with the child imitating everything the father did. The father took off his jacket, and the child took his off. The father smelled a flower, and the child did the same.

11/24/2015 - 19:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

For many years now, the Interfaith Clergy Group of Forest Hills, of which I am a proud member, has sponsored an Interfaith Thanksgiving Service on the Sunday afternoon before Thanksgiving. Historically, the service has rotated among the participating houses of worship. For reasons of logistics and space availability, this year’s service was held in our sanctuary here at the Forest Hills Jewish Center for the second consecutive year.

11/18/2015 - 19:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

A few days ago, as we were all struggling to regain our equilibrium following the horrific carnage in Paris, an item appeared on Facebook that caught my eye and made me think. It was a simple graphic that read as follows: Paris, 13/11; New York, 11/9; Israel, 24/7.

11/12/2015 - 19:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

It is unquestionably true that, since 9/11, Americans have fundamentally and consciously changed the way they relate to veterans who have served in the military, and particularly those who are currently serving.

11/04/2015 - 19:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

Beginning last summer and continuing on throughout this year, the Rabbinical Assembly, the professional organization of Conservative rabbis, has been engaged in a process of “re-visioning,” evaluating how best to understand its function and serve its members. This process is both time and energy-intensive, and not something that the organization, of which I am the immediate past-President, undertakes lightly. The stakes are high, particularly at a time of challenge such as we are facing. If you’re going to do it, you’d better do it right.

10/28/2015 - 20:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

In the terribly sad days after Israeli Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin’s assassination twenty years ago this week, a bumper sticker began to show up on cars both here and in Israel. It read "Haver, attah hasser": Friend, you are missed. The phrase was a riff on President Clinton’s famous “Shalom Haver” (Farewell, friend) comment uttered the night of the assassination. Obviously shaken and grieved by what had transpired, the President paid an eloquent and heartfelt farewell to the man who had been his partner in the Middle East peace process, and also his friend.