The only sure things in life are death, taxes — and a strong Jewish turnout on Election Day. And that will be particularly true this year, experts agree. Aside from the intense battle for the U.S. Senate here, a race which has the Jewish community torn between two favorites, there is another motivating factor: The Monica Lewinsky scandal. Polls show that with the exception of blacks, Jews are more supportive of President Bill Clinton than other ethnic groups.
Seeking to answer the religious pluralism symposium question — “Can We Jews Get Along?” — three leading rabbis of different denominations posited a cautiously hopeful response. Despite strong ideological disagreements, they addressed the need to work toward change within the nexus of religion-state relations in Israel.
Former Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres stressed the need for a Palestinian state, a national unity government in Israel, and reducing the power of religious parties, during a wide-ranging speech last week at Manhattan’s Plaza Hotel.
Catholics will now be able pray to a Jewish-born nun for divine intervention. That’s because on Sunday, Pope John Paul II made Edith Stein, a German-born Jewish convert to Catholicism, into an official saint of the Catholic Church.
It is the first time in history that the Vatican has elevated a Jewish convert to sainthood, said Rabbi Leon Klenicki, interfaith affairs director of the Anti-Defamation League. But the canonization of Stein, who died in the gas chambers of Auschwitz, has re-opened wounds in the Catholic-Jewish relationship.
Are relations among the leaders of Judaism’s branches as bad as they’ve been portrayed?
A recent, well-publicized report on hundreds of examples of rabbinic cooperation nationwide emphasized that the situation may be improving. But even some of the rabbis involved in cooperative efforts questioned the report’s positive spin.