Blogs

Are More Rabbis Saying ‘I Do’ To Interfaith Weddings?

09/28/2010 - 20:00
Associate Editor

Eight years ago, like all Reform rabbinical students about to be ordained, Rachel Goldenberg had to make a decision. Would she officiate at interfaith weddings or not?

Along with many of her classmates at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Goldenberg opted against performing such ceremonies, reasoning that the ritual made sense only when joining two Jews.

But a few months ago, Rabbi Goldenberg, the spiritual leader of Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek in Chester, Conn., changed her mind.

Julie Wiener

Will the Jewish right save J Street from itself?

I just finished writing a story on J Street's disastrous week and the possible consequences of the revelation it's leaders lied for two years about George Soros' contributions - consequences on Capitol Hill, in voting booths and in the Jewish communal world. 

In looking the story over, I was particularly struck by one quote from my old friend Doug Bloomfield, once the legislative director of AIPAC, now a columnist for – gasp – Jewish newspapers.

Birth Announcement For Kveller

 A week and a half ago I mentioned here that Kveller, a new Jewish parenting website was due to arrive this fall.

Well, I am pleased to see that it seems to have emerged from the womb sometime last week. While I am not privy to the labor-and-delivery details (Ob-gyn or midwife? Natural or C-section?), from what I can see the newborn is attractive and in good health — and, with hundreds of articles and listings, already has a lot to say.

The Last Word: Musings on Literary Estates, from Kafka to Kerouac

Last week I wrote about the ongoing battle over Chaim Grade's literary estate.  Then on Sunday, The New York Times Magazine had a front-pager on Kafka's  estate, which the National Library of Israel wants.  But which the descendants of Max Brod, who Kafka gave his papers to and told him to destroy, remain tied up in a ca

ADL, Pew fighting those who fight mosques

The Anti-Defamation League has filed a legal brief opposing legal efforts to stop construction of a mosque in Murfreesboro, Tenn.

Actually, the brief is a project of the newly formed Interfaith Coalition on Mosques (ICOM), which ADL created in the wake of mounting reports that local officials in communities around the country are working to block mosque construction and expansion.

Opponents of the Murfreesboro mosque are basing their suit on legal technicalities and claims it would pose “elevated risks to the public safety of citizens of Rutherford County.”

Two takes on the West Bank settlement debate

If you want to understand the maddeningly complex debate over Israel's West Bank settlements and U.S. policy, check out these two op-eds that articulately outline two opposing positions.

In today's Washington Post, columnist Richard Cohen took the Obama administration to task for what he says is its counterproductive focus on stopping settlement construction as a necessary precursor of a viable peace process.

Cohen accurately laid out the emotional punch the issue carries for both sides:

The Mikveh Demystified

I'm a guest blogger today at Mayyim Hayyim, the innovative community mikveh in Boston founded (in part) by Anita Diamant, the author of "The Red Tent," "How to Raise a Jewish Child" and many other works of fiction and nonfiction. Here's my post:

Hey, Jdate, Here's My Own FREE Advice

There’s nothing like being reprimanded by Jdate to really make a single gal feel like a million bucks.

“In order to inspire his total devotion, you need to stop using all the wrong ways that most women think work to get love, but really just push men away,” begins the email titled, “Inspire his total devotion” sent by Jdate to its female patrons.

It ends this way:

J Street in a tough spot over Soros funding revelations

You gotta wonder why people in politics lie when the things they're lying about will inevitably come to light.

Don't ask, don't tell, don't do anything at all in the Senate

Just in case you need more evidence of the paralysis gripping Capitol Hill, consider yesterday's successful effort by Senate Republicans to block debate on legislation repealing the military's “don't ask, don't tell” policy on gay soldiers.

And the threatened filibuster wasn't even on a vote on the bill itself; instead, GOP lawmakers effectively prevented it from even being discussed.

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