A L’Chaim To Conservative Judaism

JTS chancellor: ‘Complacency’ and ‘despair’ … ‘are forbidden;' ‘both are distractions from the task at hand.’

Special To The Jewish Week

I’ve spent the better part of my adult life as a scholar of American Judaism, with a special focus on figures at the center of Conservative Judaism, and I’ve spent most of those years enjoying the benefits of Conservative Jewish institutions, conversations and communities.

Chancellor Arnold M. Eisen

Thanksgiving And Chanukah: Two Distinct Holidays


As someone who loves to eat and is proud to be an American, I would never be the Grinch who stole Thanksgiving. But I confess. I have not been swept up in the whirlwind excitement over Thanksgivukkah. The last time Chanukah occurred around this season was 1861, but President Lincoln only declared Thanksgiving an official holiday in 1863.

Jump-starting A Synagogue Stimulus Plan

Special To The Jewish Week

At the recent national convention of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, Rabbi Ed Feinstein was reported to have said, “The house is on fire,” as a way to signal to Conservative congregations that the hour is too late for synagogues to think about modest changes in the way they do their business. Since the 2000 publication of my book, “Finding a Spiritual Home: How a New Generation of Jews can Transform the American Synagogue,” I have worked with many congregations and rabbis across the denominational spectrum about strategies to move their institutions from the current paradigm — the synagogue-center — to a new paradigm, the synagogue-community, which is far better suited to address the changing reality of American life and the next generation of American Jews.

Rabbi Sid Schwarz

Calendar Mash-up Is Spur To Gratitude

Special To The Jewish Week

What do you get when you cross Chanukah with Thanksgiving?  Sounds like the beginning of a Borscht Belt joke, I know, but it’s not only happening this year, the convergence of Chanukah and Thanksgiving is actually a once-in-a-lifetime event, which, if celebrated well, is also an event that can change your life forever. 

Rabbi Brad Hirschfield

Negotiation With Iran Leads To Threat of War

Bibi: 'If Israel is forced to stand alone, Israel will stand alone.'

Recent reports of the status of negotiations with Iran to resolve the risk of Iran's threat to become a nuclear power have alarming implications.  The U.S. is apparently supporting a deal where existing sanctions on Iran will be relaxed against an Iranian pledge to freeze its progress towards achieving nuclear weapon capability.

"I Am Not Orthodox"

Our definitions should be based on the highest common denominator: the Jewish soul.

Special To The Jewish Week

I am not Orthodox.

There. I said it.

Rabbi Mendel Teldon

Working Together to Expand Support for Israel on Campus

Special To The Jewish Week


The Jewish community is rightly concerned with a campus environment that is too often hostile to Israel. Public demonstrations, inflammatory language and personal attacks by anti-Israel organizations seek to exploit the spirit of open debate and public action central to American academic life.

Pew Has The Score: Red Sox Pitcher Is No Koufax

Special To The Jewish Week

I am anything but objective when it comes to Red Sox baseball. A long-suffering fan since the days of Ted Williams, I rejoiced in the 2004 miracle comeback, the 2007 Series sweep, and, now, the thrilling 2013 turnaround.

Steven Bayme

Needed: Conversations On Choosing Life

Special To The Jewish Week

Truly caring for a person at the end of life requires conversations — about love and legacy, about bestowing and receiving blessings, about choosing life versus fighting death.

Rabbi Irwin Kula

YCT And The Cherem Game

Special To The Jewish Week

I wasn't raised in an observant home, I never attended a Jewish day school and no one else in my family has ever been observant. Despite that, I found myself drawn, starting at age ten, to Orthodox Judaism. Over the course of my journey, I have experienced the many gifts of the diverse faces of the Jewish People, all of which have impacted significantly upon me, from Chabad to Renewal, from Reform to Yeshivish, from Modern Orthodox to Post-denominational.

Syndicate content