Nonprofits Already Feeling The Squeeze

Staff Writer
Leaders of Jewish foundations and nonprofits are bracing for slashes in available funding this week as global and domestic markets tumble and fears of a recession loom. And some are already starting to feel the pinch as anxiety mounts among philanthropists and leaders of the groups they fund. On Tuesday, the development director for an Israeli nonprofit with solid roots among American donors said two of his organization’s funders had just informed him that money they committed to give in the first quarter of the year would be pushed back to the fourth quarter.

Evolution Of The Feminist Seder

Staff Writer
In Richardson, Texas, they call it “Miriam’s seder.” “Hers Seder” is the term of art in Pennsylvania, at the American Jewish Congress gatherings. And in a diverse cross-section of neighborhoods, towns and cities, from the semi-suburbia of Hollis Hills, Queens, to the flatlands of Canton, Ohio, to the East Bay of San Francisco, to the deep South of Birmingham, Ala., the event is known simply as a women’s seder.

‘If You Stream It, They Will Come’

Staff Writer
Lisa Gilbert, a native of Cincinnati who now lives in Manhattan, listened to the rabbi’s sermon and the choir’s singing at her family’s Cincinnati congregation on the High Holy Days last year. From her New York apartment. Online. Gilbert, a 30-year-old research analyst, watched the live streaming Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur services of Congregation Beth Adam, on the humanistic synagogue’s Web site, because she had attended several congregations after moving here and did not feel welcome or comfortable at any one of them.

Stream Of Criticism For Jewish Comic Larry David


 Lenny Bruce cursed a blue streak. Don Rickles insulted anyone within hearing distance. Sacha Baron Cohen has raised embarrassment of the unsuspected — Jews and non-Jews alike — into an art form. And for Sarah Silverman, not even the memory of the Holocaust is sacred.

David in mid-stream during last week’s episode of “Curb Your Enthusiasm.”

Beyond The Prom

Staff Writer
Houston - The sanctuary-multiuse room of Congregation Beth El, a Reform synagogue in Sugar Land, a bedroom community near here, was converted one recent spring afternoon into a one-day-a-year use: an enormous dressing room. Amid racks holding more than 500 chic gowns, with bima and Israeli flag in the background, two dozen teenage girls tried on the dresses behind makeshift barricades, and browsed at tables piled with jewelry and other accessories. The fashion items, all donated, were for the high school seniors during the recent end-of-school-year prom season.

Sotomayor Gets Preliminary Thumbs Up

Staff Writer
Sonia Sotomayor has ruled on only a limited number of cases directly involving the Jewish community or Jewish issues during her 17 years as a federal judge, but her record seems reassuring, according to legal experts and representatives of Jewish organizations. President Barack Obama on Tuesday nominated Sotomayor, from the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, to succeed Associate Justice David Souter, who is stepping down from the Supreme Court when its current session ends this summer.

In White Mountains, Miles To Go Before We Meet

Staff Writer
North Conway, N.H. — Karen Eisenberg brought the homemade chopped liver. Joan Kurz brought a bagful of bottled gefilte fish. Suzie Laskin, the charoset. And other women came to Maestro’s Italian restaurant last week, carrying yom tov staples, as the sun set over the White Mountains. It was time for the second-night seder of Chavurah HeHarim, the Jewish community of rural east-central New Hampshire and western Maine, and the restaurant staff had prepared a meal of roast chicken, tsimmes and chametz-free chocolate cake.

J Street’s Strengths, Weaknesses On View at First National Conference

Washington Correspondent

J Street, the pro-peace-process political action committee and lobby that many pro-Israel hawks love to hate, demonstrated this week that it can pull off an overflow Washington conference, attract hordes of media, feed the passion of supporters and use new technologies to satisfy young activists.

But that could be the easy part.

Jeremy Ben-Ami addressing J Street's first national conference

Birthright Study Offers Mixed Bag Of Results on Jewish Connections

Birthrighters are far more likely to marry within the fold than those who didn’t go on the free Israel trip, a new study revealed.

Editor and Publisher

Ten years ago, a survey asked American Jewish college students to name the top 20 countries they would like to visit. Israel didn’t make the list.

Today, nearly 225,000 Jews between the ages of 18 and 26, mostly from the U.S., have visited Israel, courtesy of Birthright Israel, a program whose free 10-day trips are designed to deepen Jewish identity.


Still Reeling From Ike

Staff Writer
Galveston, Texas — Shabbat services in a synagogue lobby. Volunteers fixing cemetery gravestones. A Jewish federation budget meeting. Those are the signs of damage, and of recovery, in Southwest Texas three months after Hurricane Ike, the Category 2 storm that ranked as the worst to strike the United States this year and the third worst ever.
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