News

Praying For Peace

01/09/2009
Staff Writer
In the Haftorah reading in synagogue last week, Ezekiel prophesizes a united Holy Land: “And they shall no longer be divided into two kingdoms.” For lovers of Israel, for residents of the Jewish state, for anyone fearing the threat of a two-state solution advanced in the peace process, for this soldier saying his morning prayers this week overlooking Gaza, the ancient promise has contemporary resonance.

Yossi The Plumber

01/16/2009
Staff Writer
Samuel J. Wurzelbacher of Toledo, Ohio, became the most famous plumber in the United States during this year’s presidential campaign for a question he asked then Sen. Barack Obama about the candidate’s tax policies. Now Joe the Plumber is Joe the War Correspondent. Wurzelbacher, who became a campaign punch line and John McCain supporter, went to Israel last week to report on the war in Gaza for the conservative Pajamas TV (www.pjtv.com) Web site.

City’s Oldest Pulpit Rabbi Dies

01/23/2009
Staff Writer
Rabbi David Hollander, who left the pulpit of the Mount Eden Center in the Bronx 26 years ago then continued to serve as spiritual leader of the Hebrew Alliance of Brighton by the Sea, as New York City’s oldest fulltime pulpit rabbi, died Jan. 19 in Coney Island Hospital of complications from a lung infection. He was 95, and had continued to work until becoming ill a few months ago.

Good Skates For Israel

01/23/2009
Staff Writer
Two names to keep in mind — Alexandra and Roman Zaretsky. They’re Israel’s top-ranked ice dancing team, 22nd- place finishers in the 2006 Winter Olympic Games at Turin, and likely competitors in Vancouver next year. This week they took part in the European Figure Skating Championships in Helsinki, which ends on Sunday. The brother and sister — Alexandra is sometimes knows as Sasha — were in the middle of the pack after the compulsory dance part of the program.

A Memorial Grows In Staszow

01/30/2009
Staff Writer
Staszow, a shtetl in southeast Poland on the road between Kielce and Sandomierz, was home to Jews for two and a half centuries, until the Holocaust left the village judenrein. Among the Staszow Jews were the Goldfarbs, Jack Goldfarb’s forebears. When the Philadelphia-born freelance writer first visited his ancestral homeland a half century ago, he found no trace of Staszow’s original Jewish cemetery. A newer Jewish burial ground, two-thirds of a mile from the center of the village, was an open, empty lot on a tree-lined hill.

A Memorial Grows In Staszow

01/30/2009
Staff Writer
Staszow, a shtetl in southeast Poland on the road between Kielce and Sandomierz, was home to Jews for two and a half centuries, until the Holocaust left the village judenrein. Among the Staszow Jews were the Goldfarbs, Jack Goldfarb’s forebears. When the Philadelphia-born freelance writer first visited his ancestral homeland a half century ago, he found no trace of Staszow’s original Jewish cemetery. A newer Jewish burial ground, two-thirds of a mile from the center of the village, was an open, empty lot on a tree-lined hill.

Interfaith Leader Klenicki Dies

01/30/2009
Staff Writer
Rabbi Leon Klenicki, one of the Jewish community’s leading voices for rapprochement with the Catholic Church, died Jan. 25. A resident of Monroe Township, N.J., he was 78. Rabbi Klenicki, a native of Argentina, served as the Anti-Defamation League’s director of Interfaith Affairs until his retirement eight years ago, and as the ADL’s co-liaison with the Vatican, meeting frequently with Church leaders in Rome, the United States and other countries.

Sacred Sexuality

01/30/2009
Staff Writer
“Oprah’s Rabbi” is back in the sex business — writing about it, that is. Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, who has spent time learning in Lubavitch yeshivot and leading an outreach center at Oxford University, is the author of  “The Kosher Sutra: 8 Sacred Secrets for Reigniting Desire and Restoring Passion for Life” (HarperOne), his third book on physical intimacy. His earlier books on the subject, “Kosher Sex: A Recipe for Passion and Intimacy” and “Kosher Adultery: Seduce and Sin With Your Spouse” became bestsellers.

Keyboard Kaddish

01/30/2009
Staff Writer
Kaddish became a daily tradition for Mark Leinkram, a publisher-printer from Clifton, N.J., after his sister Sharon died of cancer last year. Not from an observant family, he faithfully recited the Aramaic mourner’s prayer, but didn’t understand all the meaning behind it. Now he’s starting to learn. Leinkram, 50, is one of the first to turn to mykaddish.com, an on-line resource guide established last week by Partners in Torah, an educational outreach organization affiliated with Torah Umesorah, and by the incubator Afikim Foundation.

Hunter’s Jewish Brainiacs Have Game

02/06/2009
Staff Writer
With it’s sterling academic reputation, Hunter College High School on the Upper East Side ranks annually as one of the country’s top high schools, excelling in such brainiac extracurriculars as chess, debating and science competitions. This year the school has game. Its basketball team, undefeated at 15-0 after a 68-43 victory Monday at Norman Thomas High School, leads its public schools division, and the Hawks are ranked among the best city teams. And this year, the team has a Jewish taam (flavor).
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