When Noam Married Hagit

05/06/2012 - 20:00
Jewish Week Online Columnist

Everyone expects fireworks when they fall in love.  For Noam and Hagit, the skies lit up on their wedding day – two months ago. But these fireworks weren’t fun. These were rockets fired by Arab terrorists.

Hundreds of rockets from the Gaza Strip were aimed at cities in southern Israel, placing more than a million Israelis under the threat of death.  The IDF had important decisions to make. So did Noam and Hagit.     

Love and war: Noam Blau and Hagit Brodsky didn't let rocket attacks from Gaza stand in the way of their big day.

Adult B’nai Mitzvah – The Power of Ritual

05/03/2012 - 20:00
Jewish Week Online Columnist

 I looked out at their faces: some immensely excited, some already nervous, some obviously bored. I had asked each 12 year old in the room to turn to their parents and to discuss what the family was most looking forward to in the coming year, as they approached the celebration of becoming B’nai Mitzvah. We went around the room, and each family had a chance to answer: “seeing all of our family and friends in one place,” and “the party,” were the most common answers.

Rabbi Marci N. Bellows

Baked Mushroom Wontons

Enjoy a low-fat version of a classic Chinese favorite
05/02/2012 - 20:00
Online Jewish Week Columnist

I love Chinese food - even when it's not Christmas, I get a hankering for the stereotypical Jewish takeout choice. But not all of the choices are exactly diet-friendly... specifically some favorites like fried wontons or egg rolls. But with a little adapting, you can have your wontons and eat them too!

Baked mushroom wontons. Photo by Amy Spiro

Assuming a New Responsibility

05/02/2012 - 20:00
Jewish Week Online Columnist

For the past six years, I have served as an officer of the Rabbinical Assembly, the 1600-member-strong international organization of Conservative rabbis.

Rabbi Gerald Skolnik is spiritual leader of the Forest Hills Jewish Center, and incoming President of the Rabbinical Assembly.

Tim Boxer at Cornell Sermon Contest

05/02/2012 - 20:00
Jewish Week Online Columnist

Sarah Grace Victor, born in Philadelphia to Christian parents from India, is the winner of the second annual Harold I. Saperstein Cornell Student Sermon Contest. The competition, based on the Hebrew Bible, was open to all students on campus. Victor emerged victorious over 30 contestants.

Norman Turkish, creator of the Cornell student sermon competition, congratulates the winner, Sara Grace Victor.

Dor Chadash Yom Ha'atzmau't Celebration

Over 1,000 New Yorkers came out to BB Kings to celebrate Yom Ha'atzmaut (Israel Independence Day) hosted by Dor Chadash.

Holy Purpose, Historic Route

04/30/2012 - 20:00
Staff Writer

Gan Sacher (Sacher Park) in the heart of Jerusalem, plays the role in the capital that Central Park does here — a site for concerts and barbecues, soccer games and Frisbee throwing, political rallies and romantic dates.

Last week Gan Sacher was the venue of a mitzvah.

Photo By Shimon Kopolovits and Amy Schwartz

Reading The Tealeaves From Egypt To Syria

04/30/2012 - 20:00
Staff Writer

Mordechai Kedar is a research associate at the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies and the founder and director of the Center for the Study of the Middle East and Islam, which is now in formation at Bar-Ilan University. He was here recently to speak about developments in the Middle East to the American Friends of Bar-Ilan University. He is an expert on Arabic literature and culture and Middle East affairs.

Mordechai Kedar.

Getting Hosed On Independence Day

04/30/2012 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

As Israel celebrates its 64th year with joy and a haze of barbecue smoke, it’s easy to feel nostalgic.

After all, the creation of Israel is nothing short of a miracle. To think, on the heels of such destruction, to finally have a country of our own!

That despite the setbacks and the many innocent people who have lost their lives, what a thriving and impressive country Israel is. A real start-up nation.

Abigail Pickus

The Lehigh Valley, A Low-Key Berkshires

04/30/2012 - 20:00
Travel Writer

Years ago, when a cousin became engaged to a doctor with a practice in Pennsylvania steel country, the whole family was anxious. Could their urbane New York girl find happiness in the rolling green landscape of the Lehigh Valley? And would she be the only Jew?

The new galleries at the Allentown Art Museum, top.
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