Op-Ed: If You Marry A Jew, You’re One Of Us


Millennia ago, before rabbis existed or conversion was invented, thousands who were not born Jewish became part of the Jewish community through a very simple act: They married a Jew.

Marc Mezvinsky and Chelsea Clinton at their wedding, July 31, 2010. Genevieve de Manio

See One Person, Be One Person

Special To The Jewish Week

Holocaust educators know that some numbers are almost impossible to comprehend: six million Jews; 11 million people; 1.5 million children, 1.1 of them Jewish. But if you tell me one person’s story, then I can begin to understand.

Rabbi Debra Orenstein

Egyptian Earplugs?

The importance of oversight in East Ramapo.

Special To The Jewish Week

Each year on Passover, I get chills when we recount the plagues against Egypt: Blood, boils, hail, and death of first born children represent the stuff of horror films. And yet, the second plague tends to stand out for me. “The Nile shall swarm with frogs and they shall come up and enter your palace, your bedchamber, and your bed, the houses of your courtiers and your people, and your ovens and your kneading bowls” [Exodus 7:28]. 

The plague of the frogs is worse than it seems. Fotolia

April 1865: A Passover To Remember

Special to The Jewish Week

When Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia to Lt.-General Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox on April 9, 1865, an exchange of their respective seder plans was not high on their list of priorities. As American Jews celebrate our festival of freedom and the sesquicentennial anniversary of that historic day, it is an opportune time to consider the significance of April 1865 in our nation’s history and reflect how that historical pivot continues to shape the landscape of our country.

Rabbi Elliot J. Cosgrove

Rev. John Steinbruck And The Power Of One

Special To The Jewish Week

If a picture is worth a thousand words, a life counts for a million or more. I recently attended a memorial service for Rev. John Steinbruck, who died March 1 in Delaware at the age of 84.

Rabbi Sid Schwarz

YU: The Iron Dome Of Jewish Leadership

Ambassador Danny Ayalon says the quality of the school's students have soothed his fears for the future.


In 2003, while still serving as the Israeli Ambassador to the United States, I was privileged to attend the investiture ceremony of Richard Joel as president of Yeshiva University.  Since then, I have served as co-chairman of Nefesh B’Nefesh, Deputy Foreign Minister of Israel, and a member of the Israeli Knesset.  Ten years ago, I would never have imagined that I would one day return to YU to join President Joel and the university’s illustrious faculty as the Rennert Visiting Professor of Foreign Policy Studies, a title of which I am most proud.

Wikimedia Commons

The Modern Orthodox Brain Drain: Part II

'I don’t know when being Modern Orthodox became synonymous with being rich, but it has.'

Special To The Jewish Week

Kudos to Elli Fischer for drawing attention to a fundamental crisis within American Modern Orthodoxy, one that is even graver than his diagnosis. (“Modern Orthodoxy Has Its Costs,” Opinion, Feb. 27)

The costs of Modern Orthodox life have many feeling like they're emotionally and financially underwater. Fotolia

Post-Election, An Unbecoming Sense of Doom

Special To The Jewish Week

On the morning after last week’s Israeli elections, Knesset member Zehava Gal-On wrote the following to supporters of Meretz, the left-wing party she chairs:

Elli Fischer

Pour Out Your Love?

This year’s anti-Semitism must have a place at the seder table.

Special To The Jewish Week

What will Jews do this year?

Passover is a time of joy and freedom, anticipation and redemption. And because we are strong and free, we can afford one pointed flash of anger. After the meal, we traditionally open the door for Elijah and say three biblical verses of vindictiveness that begin “Pour out Your wrath…” Shfokh hamatkha al ha-goyim. We crave justice. We seek revenge. We ask that our enemies get their just desserts for all of the irrational hatred we’ve suffered. We note the spilled venom of centuries that has taken innocent Jewish lives.

Erica Brown

Redefining Freedom

At the heart of the Passover story: service to others.

Special To The Jewish Week

What’s a three-word phrase that celebrates freedom? How about this: At your service. The ability and willingness to serve lies at the heart of the Passover story and remains so to this very day.

Rabbi Brad Hirschfield
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