Features

How Do Israelis View Secular Humanism?

Rabbi Sivan Maas is the first female secular humanistic rabbi in Israel. In this interview, she explains her role in the community as well as the future of secular humanistic Judaism to Jacques Berlinerblau of Georgetown University.

Signs Of Slovakia’s Jewish Past And Present

07/16/2012 - 20:00
Staff Writer

The tourist above in the center of Bratislava, capital of Slovakia, isn’t taking a picture of the historic, two-spired synagogue that dominated the area since its construction a century ago.

She’s photographing a replica.

As part of a civic project funded by the city and initiated by the Israeli Chamber of Commerce, the empty shell of a synagogue went up recently in Fish Square on the spot where the original Moorish building, torn down five decades ago, once stood.

Photo By Getty Images

Face To Face With Homelessness

07/16/2012 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

A man with a long white beard, dressed in rags, comes about an inch away from my face and says, “I’ve been waiting for you.” I try not to act too startled. I had just finished leading a session on spirituality at a day program for the Jewish homeless, and this would be the first of many such conversations, where social norms disappear amid the schizophrenic street prophets of New York City.

Avram Mlotek

Along The ‘Sephardic Path’

07/16/2012 - 20:00
Travel Writer

I kept meaning to go to Girona. The Catalan city in the Pyrenees is the regional standout on the Caminos de Sefarad (“Paths of Sepharad”), an evolving Spanish network of Jewish heritage sites.

But in June, it was already summery-hot; the beach beckoned, and Girona lies inland. So I headed north along the Costa Brava, toward another, smaller city on the Camino list: Castelló d’Empúries.

Castelló’s charming old town. Hilary Larson

New Alliance For A New Middle East

07/16/2012 - 20:00
Staff Writer

Ephraim Sneh, a retired general in the IDF, served as a deputy minister of defense. A physician, Sneh, 67, was also elected to the Knesset in 1992 as a member of the Labor Party and later served both as minister of health and transportation. He is currently chairman of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Strategic Dialogue at the Netanya Abraham College and is a consultant with the Israel Policy Forum. The Jewish Week spoke with him recently about the peace process and issues surrounding it.

Ephraim Sneh: Backs coalition of Israel, Jordan, the Palestinians and the Gulf States.

Holiness in the Sand

07/12/2012 - 20:00
Jewish Week Online Columnist

Towels? Sunscreen? Pop culture magazines?

And so my summer ritual with my sister begins – we treasure our opportunities to go to Jones Beach each weekend. We wake up somewhat early (so we can beat those crazy crowds), pack our beach bags, pick up some bagels and coffee, and head south on Wantagh Parkway. Just as we had spent so many summer days on the beach growing up in Chicago, we now made it a special part of our adult lives on the East Coast.

Shabbat on the beach, 2012.

Roasted Peach Crumb Cake

The perfect pairing of luscious fruit and indulgent cake
07/12/2012 - 20:00
Online Jewish Week Columnist
Whenever I wander through the market near my home in Jerusalem, I'm drawn - both by smell and by sight - to the mounds of ripe peaches and nectarines snuggled up alongside the plums, grapes, cherries and melons at every fruit stand.
Roasted Peach Crumb Cake. Photo by Amy Spiro

What the Doctor Ordered: Shabbat at Camp Ramah

07/11/2012 - 20:00
Jewish Week Online Columnist

One of my very favorite movies is Rob Reiner’s The Princess Bride , based on the classic novel by William Goldman. The movie is wonderful for a whole host of reasons, but essentially, it is a whimsical riff on the idea of “true love.” Wesley and Buttercup, the hero and heroine, endure all kinds of outrageous misfortune, but ultimately, their destiny is to be together.mTrue love wins out.

Rabbi Gerald C. Skolnik is the spiritual leader of the Forest Hills Jewish Center in Queens.

What Is Moishe House? Building Involvement Learning And Leadership In Great Neck

Moishe House was founded in 2006 and has quickly grown from four friends hosting Shabbat dinners for young adults out of their home in Oakland, California, to 46 thriving centers of Jewish life, spanning 14 countries.

Making A Beautiful Statement

07/10/2012 - 20:00
Staff Writer

This is the time of year for unique beauty contests in Israel.

Last week in this space: the annual Miss Large competition for hefty participants.

This week: Miss Holocaust Survivor, which was held in Haifa.

The first such pageant featured 14 entrants — not a “miss” among the wives and mother and grandmothers — who were chosen from some 500 women, age 74-97, who wore accessorized black evening gowns while walking on a red carpet.

Photo By Getty Images
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