Orthodox Jews

JFNA To Promote Civil Marriage

In Israel, federations walk a fine line to support religious freedom without opposing Chief Rabbinate.

05/27/2014 - 20:00
Editor and Publisher

The Jewish Federations of North America, or JFNA, may soon launch an effort that would include supporting groups in Israel working to limit or end Orthodox control of personal-status issues such as marriage, divorce, conversion and burial, The Jewish Week has learned.

Gary Rosenblatt

Toward A Gentler Orthodoxy

Godly people strive to understand each other; good people can differ out of pure motives.

03/18/2014 - 20:00

Throughout the Middle Ages, Jews and Christians were consumed by hateful polemics about each other. They fought theological duels that sometimes led to deadly Christian violence against our ancestors. Christians no longer pose any existential threat to Jews, yet the penchant for hateful language has continued, particularly in my Orthodox community. Much of this venom is directed against ourselves in fraternal battles that are turning as lethal as the medieval Jewish-Christian warfare. Today the traditional fear and vilification of gentiles has been transferred to other Orthodox Jews with whom we disagree.

The recent decision by a school to allow girls to wear teffillin has created controversy, sometimes mean-spirited. Fotolia

Modern Orthodoxy At A Crossroads

The movement tries both to preserve rabbinic authority and allow for intellectual freedom and the expression of diverse viewpoints.

03/03/2014 - 19:00
Special To The Jewish Week

Thankfully, the recent controversy at Yeshiva University over a rabbinical student who had held a private “partnership minyan” in his home has been resolved satisfactorily, and hopefully without harm either to the student or to the critically important institution that he attends. Cooler heads, fortunately, have prevailed. Yet the fact of the controversy itself raises broader questions concerning the future directions of Modern Orthodoxy and its role within the American Jewish community.

Steven Bayme

An Arresting Development In Jerusalem

10/15/2013 - 20:00

The “crime” of praying as a Jew has a long, and dishonored place, in Jewish history.

New Hope For Gay Orthodox Jews

09/30/2013 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

The holidays are over. Through the fasting and food, the succession of pageant, discomfort, reconciliation and exultation, a single moment continues to stands out. Every year for more than 30 years I have found the Yom Kippur afternoon service Torah reading unnerving — and this year I did not.

Rabbi Steven Greenberg

Maharats March Into Jewish World

First-ever ordination at Orthodox women’s seminary seen as ‘sea change,’ but steep hurdles persist.
06/18/2013 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

It was a rite of spring, as graduations are.

But this one, like Stravinsky’s 100-year-old musical score, was a controversial and bold break with tradition and all that came before.

Rabba Sara Hurwitz, left with Maharats Ruth Balinsky Friedman, left, Rachel Kohl Finegold and Abby Brown Scheier. Joan Roth

What’s Unique About Denver?

Orthodox communities try to sell themselves to fairgoers overwhelmed by choices.
04/23/2013 - 20:00
Jewish Week Correspondent

When Yehuda and Tova Miller walked into the Orthodox Union’s Jewish Communities Fair last Sunday, they saw the same scene that greeted the more than 1,000 other people who attended the event: a cavernous room in which six rows of tables were set up.

Looking to see what Savannah has to offer. Judah Harris

NYU Dorm Changes Worry Observant Jews

04/14/2013 - 20:00
Associate Editor

For the sake of promoting “diversity,” New York University housing policies will no longer allow incoming freshman to choose a roommate based on religious compatibility, raising concern and anxiety among Sabbath observant students. Roommate assignments, said NYU, will be primarily based “on geographic diversity" rather than personal choice. Upperclassman, however, may choose to have roommates of the opposite sex, even if they share a religion.

NYU: Religious issues an opportunity for personal growth. NYU Photo.

We Talk A Good Game

03/19/2013 - 20:00
Editor and Publisher

http://www.russellberriefoundation.org/initiative_jr_ujafederation.phpHow much, if any, cooperation and collaboration can there be — or should there be — among Reform, Conservative and Orthodox communities, starting with their rabbis?

Gary Rosenblatt

Obama And The Orthodox

On Election Day, frum neighborhoods stood out among New York City’s handful of Republican precincts.
11/26/2012 - 19:00
Special To The Jewish Week

There’s an old saw in American politics, usually attributed to the sociologist Milton Himmelfarb, that goes like this: “Jews live like Episcopalians and vote like Puerto Ricans.” That comment, made a generation ago when Episcopalians were a symbol of American power and wealth, indicated that Jews, by and large supporters of liberal causes, often voted against their economic interests.

In analyzing the 2012 vote, I’ve come up with a twist on Himmelfarb, this one about Orthodox Jews: “Orthodox Jews live like Puerto Ricans and vote like billionaires.”

Ari L. Goldman
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