Got that pioneering spirit? You’re invited to help build Israel’s periphery by planting roots in southern soil with Nefesh B’Nefesh.
Likewise, my wife has had a very similar experience each Rosh Hashanah since we moved to Harrisburg. However, her trip down memory lane occurs well before HaYom HaRas Olam. Layala grew up in Brooklyn, where she greatly enjoyed listening to her father lead the davening each Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur. From the get-go, my father-in-law’s melodies are different from those sung by our shul’s chazzan. As such, while following along in her Machzor, my wife softly sings all of her father’s tunes to herself.
For Layala, these familiar melodies evoke the wonderful memories of her loving family, a very happy childhood, and Yom Tovim spent in the company of her dear grandparents.
I would wager we each have familiar tunes for various parts of the Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur davening that can transport us back to meaningful times and places in our lives.
Where did you travel this past Rosh Hashanah?
Rabbi Akiva and Layala Males recently spent their fifth Rosh Hashanah together with Kesher Israel Congregation in Harrisburg, PA.
About the Author: Akiva Males grew up in University Heights, Ohio, and attended the Hebrew Academy of Cleveland from kindergarten (fall 1979) through 8th grade (summer 1988). Together with his wife, Layala (nee Feintuch of Brooklyn), he moved to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania in the fall of 2007 to become the rabbi of Kesher Israel Congregation. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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Making Rouhani the president was a brilliant strategic move for Khamene’i.
Noone, least of all me, wants to see any Arab child suffer, God forbid.
The Sanctuary was built with an ezrat nashim, a separate area for women.
Every American child seems to be on Ritalin and Israelis are imitating them.
The weapons will be given to people whose politics encompass hatred for Jews, Christians, the West generally, and Women.
Rohani’s election positions the regime to cater – superficially – to reform-minded voters in Iran, while improving Iran’s prospects in international negotiations.
The top Israeli advocate for letting the terrorists out of jail is none other than Shimon Peres.
The “Community Democracy” model meets all the criteria of the liberal democratic outlook, but it is based on the Jewish heritage and the Torah.
Rowhani will have little power.
“The Lord conferred statehood upon His people so that they might defend the enforcement of justice and preserve the truth contained in our Law as handed down by transmission.”
With Iran and Hezbollah openly supporting the anti-Sunni side in Syria, the battle lines have been redrawn, this time according to ancient and familiar traditions.
Yusuf al-Qaradawi knows how to express his ideas clearly and persuasively.
The boys who leave yeshiva to go to work are made to feel like they are second class and this makes it difficult for them to remain chareidi.
At some point I noticed an arresting picture on his wall and discovered that his maternal grandfather was Rav Dovid Lifshitz.
In 2007 my parents decided it was time to downsize and sell their home of more than thirty years. To help them pack up and move into their new apartment, I returned to Cleveland to offer my assistance.
“Rabbi, is there any religious requirement for Jewish men to wear mezuzahs around their necks?”
“Rabbi, if you yourself are clean-shaven, why does this inmate claim his Jewish religion prohibits him from using a razor on his face?”
We are all aware of the terrible divisions among Israel’s Jewish population. My friends and colleagues in Israel tell me they cannot remember a time in recent years where so much fragmentation existed. All this when the external threats facing Israel grow greater by the day.
No matter our stage in life, one is seldom comfortable feeling left out. Unfortunately, many American Jews experience exactly that feeling each year as Christmas approaches. The term “December Dilemma” is used to describe the tension many Jews feel sitting on the sidelines, unable to fully enjoy or participate in the distinctly Christian themes and activities occurring all around.
On the first day of this past Rosh Hashanah, I visited Milwaukee while my wife, Layala, traveled back to the shul of her youth in Brooklyn. When we met up later in the day for Yom Tov lunch at our Harrisburg, Pennsylvania home, we had a number of experiences to share with each other.
As a synagogue rabbi I try to keep my eyes open to see how or if I can incorporate personal experiences into my weekly Shabbos sermon. Recently, I represented my shul at the Orthodox Union’s (OU) annual mission to Washington, DC (June 14-15). On my way to one of the first events, I joked with a rabbi friend from Charleston, South Carolina that I was hoping to return with some good material for that week’s sermon.
Clearly, fall has come to Central Pennsylvania. The crisp air, the vibrant array of autumn colors, and, yes, a whole lot of leaves to rake. With the arrival of my favorite season, I know Thanksgiving is just around the corner.
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