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Jerusalem, Israel
1 Tevet 5778 -
? Monday, December 18, 2017


A Very Hong Kong Chanukah

To explain to my children what Chanukah was like for me as a young girl, I find I am just as inclined to recount what it wasn’t as I am to describe what it was.

Before The Deluge: Jews Of The Mediterranean Islands (Part II)

In biblical times this island was known as Kaftor. It had close relations with the Philistines, who already swelled in the Land of Canaan when the Jews migrated in, and this Kaftorland is conceivably the Philistine homeland.

The Chemla Family – Formerly Of Neve Dekalim; Now Of Nitzan

The family: Drs. Chai and Louna Roxane Chemla and their three sons made aliya from Paris about 17 years ago. Their eldest son is a rabbi in the prison system in Northern Israel and is married with five children. Their second son, who is a chef, is married with three children and lives in Jerusalem. Their youngest son who is studying to be a dentist is still single.

Midrash Shmuel’s Rosh Yeshiva Visits U.S.

Recently, I had the opportunity to meet Rabbi Binyomin Moskovits, rosh yeshiva of Midrash Shmuel in Jerusalem's Sha'arei Chesed neighborhood. Rabbi Moskovits was in New York to attend the marriage of a student. While here, he has also been meeting with alumni and current students.

Yossi and Sara Layah Shomron: From Neve Dekalim to Nitzan

“We did not want our children to be further traumatized or our pet dogs impounded so we went directly to the Nitzan caravilla site.”

Hashgacha Pratit: The Kidney Donation That Gave More Meaning To Life

Marci Rapp finessed the setbacks with class. She rearranged her business priorities as creator and CEO of MarSea Modest Swimwear and gym clothes with her husband/business partner, Harold, in order to remain on standby as a kidney donor. Her intended recipient had been rescheduled to receive that vitally necessary organ several times. Recurring illness delayed the surgery throughout May and June 2011. On June 14th the life-saving surgery took place.

Moshe Rabbeinu Lego: A Hong Kong Pesach Special

In Hong Kong, there are certainly some inconveniences involved in finding every last product necessary to recreate the Pesach we had in New York. But, we have found it is merely a matter of mastering logistics and advance planning. Sometimes it involves finding shlepers coming in from the States willing to take a few bulky boxes of tasteless Crispy O’s and Streits Brownie Mix in an extra suitcase. This is all part of the Hong Kong festival ritual.

Zionism – Made In China

It’s true. My Zionism was made in China. I grew up in New Jersey in a town that was nearly one third Jewish. Everyone on my street was Jewish. Half my soccer team was Jewish. In Synagogue, my Cantor infused every message with Zionism, as did his wife and children. To my parents this was pure mishugas.

Sowing Seeds Of Hope In Kfar Zeitim

Chaim grew up attending a serious yeshiva in Bnei Brak. Although he was of average intelligence, he was never able to concentrate during his long hours of Gemara study. His parents constantly pushed him to do better, even hiring expensive tutors to help him catch up. But it never seemed to work. He longed to express his abundant energy and creativity rather than keeping it bottled up inside. He needed a drastically different approach - one that fostered more than just book learning.

NIJH: Caring For The Terminally Ill Jewish Patient

It was at a UJA-Federation meeting twenty-five years ago when someone asked Rabbi Maurice Lamm, the first Orthodox rabbi to ever serve on the Federation's board, how to care for a terminally ill individual. Rabbi Lamm, then a member of the rabbinate for thirty years and at the time serving as rabbi of Congregation Beth Jacob in Beverly Hills, California - one of the largest Orthodox synagogues in the U.S. - had no answer but vowed to find a way to address what was clearly a delicate and weighty issue.

The Power Of Joy In Bikur Cholim

The man woke from his sleep at the sounds of movement around him. I'll call him Louis. In a moment, he realized he was in a hospital bed and he remembered his wife's unexpected call for an ambulance the night before. A nurse's assistant introduced himself and then took Louis's blood pressure.

‘Unity For Justice’ Premiere

An unparalleled musical production featuring 39 Jewish music superstars made its worldwide debut Thursday at the Jewish Children's Museum in Crown Heights. "Unity for Justice" is a unique display of solidarity for the family of incarcerated Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin, whose sentencing of 27 years in federal prison last year has led to a thunderous outcry by the Jewish community and a number of government officials. The project serves as an innovative campaign for financial support of the Rubashkin Defense Fund, drawing mounting online interest by the hour.

ROFEH International – Chesed With A Heart

When Dr. David Shashar of Ramat Gan was called out to serve in the Paratrooper reserves during the Second Lebanon War of 2006, his goal was to help heal wounded soldiers. He never thought that he would become one himself. When two Hizbullah anti-tank missiles hit the house he was staying in, killing nine soldiers, he was among the 30 to be seriously injured. Dr. Shashar was hospitalized for the next three months in an attempt to save his arm from amputation. He underwent numerous reconstruction operations over the next three years, a number of which were in Boston's Beth Israel Hospital. The Ministry of Defense referred him to ROFEH International - a comprehensive medical referral and bikur cholim service founded by the Bostoner Rebbe, Rabbi Levi Yitzchak Horowitz, zt"l.

JRunners Organizes First-Ever 200K Relay Race

What sets the Jewish people apart from the rest of the world is our ability to infuse everyday life with kedushah, elevating the mundane to a higher plane.

At the ROI Summit, It’s Back To The Sources

When traditional Jewish sources, stories, and spirit are given a boost by technology and the creativity and enthusiasm of 120 young Jews, plenty of good things happen.

Discovering Hope In New Orleans

This summer 17 Yeshiva University students participated in the Center for the Jewish Future's New Orleans Service Mission. As part of the mission students had the opportunity to engage members of the community ravaged by Hurricane Katrina just five years ago learn about their current challenges and help rebuild.

YUConnects Branches Out

Forty-three engagements and counting. In the three years since its founding, YUConnects has tried helping alleviate what is known to many as, "the shidduch crisis."

An Eruv “Grows” in Ann Arbor, Michigan

The Ann Arbor community welcomed a brand new Eruv with open arms-which will soon be pushing strollers to shul, just in time for the delightful summer weather. The Eruv envelopes much of the community surrounding the University of Michigan Hillel Orthodox Minyan neighborhood, and parts of student campus housing.

A Dad Like No Other: Remembering Rabbi Aaron Chomsky on his First Yahrzeit

"The crown of our head has fallen, woe to us" (Lamentations 5:16). As my family and I commemorate the first yahrzeit of our dear father and zaidy, Rabbi Aaron Chomsky, zt"l, the void in our hearts remains pronounced, while our determination to practice the values he imparted to us remains stronger than ever.

See You On Shabbos

The idea of SeeYouOnShabbos.com popped into Rabbi Benzion Klatzko's head one morning. Wouldn't it be wonderful, he thought, if a website could be created that would allow Jews from all over the world to find a host or invite guests for Shabbos? He knew that there needed to be a concerted effort to connect individuals and families.

Out Of The Former USSR: A Yeshiva Brings Students To Israel And To Religion

Last week, a quiet revolution took place in the Judean Hills outside Jerusalem. One hundred and twenty parents and children from the Former Soviet Union visited Israel for the first time to participate in a groundbreaking mission. The children, ages 12-14, were all prospective students of Lezion B'rina and its sister school Bat Zion, located in Beitar and Jerusalem, respectively. For nearly 20 years, the Lezion B'rina Institute has been a second home for hundreds of Russian Jewish students who have left their birth land to seek a better future in the Jewish homeland.

YU’s Tawil: Achievement Of A Lifetime

After more than a decade of devoted research, Hayim Tawil, professor of Hebrew Studies at Yeshiva University (YU), has completed what he describes as his magnum opus. Tawil's achievement has scholars from across the world lauding his An Akkadian Lexical Companion for Biblical Hebrew as a defining accomplishment in the field of biblical study.

Showdown Between J And Z

"No, you must be realistic. You can only claim to be pro-peace when what you promote really can lead to peace." Her gentle, but assertive, voice startled me as it rose with conviction. Lori Lowenthal Marcus, initiator of Z Street, was answering my question about what J Street believes in that she does not.

Transformation of Ruins: A Gush Katif Wedding

Those of you who've been reading my postings over the years might remember my strong bonds to Gush Katif, and particularly to Kfar Darom. Every once in a while, for one reason or another, I find myself flipping through photos that I took, prior to its destruction. It is very difficult to view the pictures; my guts begin churning and sometimes it's even worse. The displacement of so many people, the abandonment of our land, and the catastrophic consequences, culminating in 8,000 rockets fired into Israel, the Gaza War, and of course, the present challenges of Goldstone were so totally unnecessary. All of these results were predicted, time and time again, before the expulsion, but were totally ignored by Sharon and Co. It is still beyond comprehension.

The Rabbi As First Responder

Ohel is well known in the New York area for the foster care programming it has been providing for over 40 years, along with its mental health services to individuals and families, and its services to the developmentally disabled through its Bais Ezra programs. Ohel also provides substantial training to professionals, and workshops and seminars to the community at large.

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