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November 28, 2015 / 16 Kislev, 5776
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Posts Tagged ‘Toronto’

Canadian Girl Guides Cookies Go Kosher

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

The famous Girl Guides cookies now have the OU approval as being kosher thanks to an all-Orthodox troop in Canada, but their chocolate mint cookies still are on the forbidden list. All Girl Scout cookies in the United States have been kosher for at least 20 years, said organization spokesman Stewart Goodbody.

When the 31 Jewish girls established the 613th Thornhill Pathfinder Unit  in Thornhill, Ontario, a heavily Jewish suburb north of Toronto, the first question member Sara Silverman asked was, “When do we start selling cookies?” according to the Girl Guides of Canada. But the troop could not bring the cookies into the synagogue where they met.

The unit “badly wanted to raise funds for Girl Guides and for camps, trips and other activities,” noted the Guides this week on its website. The unit’s leader wrote the organization, asking how to make the iconic treats kosher.

The Guides said they worked closely with the cookies’ manufacturer, Dare Foods Ltd., and found there was nothing non-kosher in  the ingredients in their classic chocolate and vanilla cookies sold in the spring.

All that was required was formal certification. Recently, the Guides confirmed that the spring cookies would be certified under the auspices of the Orthodox Union (OU).

The process was “a relatively simple and fiscally feasible endeavor,” the Guides said.

There will be no similar fate for the time being for the group’s chocolate mint cookies, sold in the fall, because of non-kosher ingredients in their coating, the group said.

“It feels like our unit has made a difference,” Avigail Rucker, a 12-year-old Guide, told The Canadian Jewish News.

Kill the Quest for ‘Chill’

Sunday, December 22nd, 2013

Single frum male seeks female who is chill. That’s the description that plagues a particular stack of resumes found in the homes of matchmakers throughout every Jewish community. It doesn’t matter if we are talking about Flatbush, Crown Heights, Williamsburg, the Upper West Side, Toronto, Miami, Los Angeles, Cleveland, Israel, etc. This desire to find a “chill” girl is everywhere.

When examined, this seemingly vague description can really be a code for many things. Unfortunately, these things are primarily irrelevant and some are just completely unrealistic. More importantly, if this is you, then you need to take a step back and put on your safety goggles because I am about to burst your bubble. Here goes. No female, young or old, is “chill” after marriage. Final answer.

Ouch – did that snippet of reality sting? Are you in disbelief? Now, I will say that many women are clever and can easily appear to be “chill.” Why? We can multitask – it’s our superhero power. We get things done and we handle our responsibilities. Hence, we begin to grow into our own unique manifestation of our husband’s Aishes Chayil.

What kills the chill? Some married men may believe that they married someone who began as very chill. So, what killed the chill? For new wives, the post-marriage non-chill mode may stem from the self-imposed pressure to perfect their ability to prepare their husbands shabbos favorites while learning how to coordinate an open home for regular visitors and random guests.

What originally seems like fun can quickly turn into a buzz kill. Hence, there is nothing glamorous about coping with the responsibility of balancing everything that one takes on in marriage: maintaining a home, dealing with in-laws and navigating your community as a couple. Scheduling conflicts for new couples can be tricky as well.

For the slightly post newlywed couple, this “non-chill” trigger can mean kids. You, BH, iy”H, have them but then you have to balance them. Then when you, iy”H, have more of them you must strive to somehow keep your world together while doing everything else (work, cooking, cleaning – oh, yea and actually talking to your spouse). Then as the years of your relationship goes on, more pressure is added.

So, again, let me say – basing your search for a partner on their ability to be “chill,” is definitely wrong. Warning: This may be you or it may be the hang-up of your otherwise perfect-catch that keeps their status set to single. Searching for a “no pressure” mate is something that may seem to make sense until you actually examine the thought process behind it and what you would really get if you accomplished such a task.

What’s behind the chill? “Chill,” that’s the word. That’s the term that acts as a crutch. It’s an easy was to say I want to be married but I need to find someone who will put no pressure on me.

What’s the big problem here? There are many big problems here. What is one big problem? The feeling of “pressure.” This feeling, like all feelings is a person’s own reaction to a situation. In life, Hashem gave us a big blessing. He gave us free will. In this case, it means that we get to choose our own reactions. This includes the feeling of pressure. You feel it, because you perceive a situation in a particular way. However, your perception is an opinion and not a fact. And, as we all know, opinions can be changed. If you can’t escape the feeling of pressure then embrace it as the blessing it is.

Police Launch Hate Crimes Probe of Toronto Arab Leader

Tuesday, August 13th, 2013

Toronto police launched a hate crimes investigation into comments made by an Arab community leader who called for the murder of Israelis.

“We have received a complaint with regards to things said at last week’s Al-Quds Day rally, a global and annual event started by the late Iranian cleric Ayatollah Khomeini to press for the “liberation” of Al-Quds, the Arabic name for Jerusalem.

There is an investigation ongoing,” Toronto police spokeswoman Wendy Drummond told the Canadian Jewish News.

Addressing an Al-Quds Day rally on Aug. 3, Elias Hazineh, former president of Palestine House in suburban Toronto, said “an ultimatum” must be issued to Israelis: “You have to leave Jerusalem. You have to leave Palestine,” he said.

“We say get out or you’re dead! We give them two minutes and then we start shooting. And that’s the only way that they will understand,” Hazineh said to cheers from a crowd of approximately 400 at the annual rally.

His remarks were captured on video and posted to several blogs and websites, including YouTube.

Hazineh later said his comments were not meant to be taken literally.

B’nai Brith Disavows Anti-Shalit Article in Newspaper It Founded

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

B’nai B’rith International has disassociated itself from a news story critical of former captive Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit published in a Canadian Jewish newspaper it founded and still is closely associated with B’nai Brith Canada.

In anticipation of a four-city visit to Canada by Gilad Shalit, The Jewish Tribune, Canada’s largest Jewish newspaper, criticized the former Hamas hostage who was the only member of a three-man crew who survived a terrorist attack on their position at a Gaza crossing in 2006.

The Jewish Tribune story in no way represents the views of B’nai B’rith International or its members and supporters around the world,” the organization said in a statement. “B’nai B’rith International has the deepest respect for Shalit and the horrors he endured as a Hamas captive.”

“While his story is intriguing and his return heartwarming, some have expressed concern that by appearing worldwide as an invited guest speaker, Shalit – who showed no resistance during his abduction nor made any attempt to protect his fellow IDF soldiers – could now become a new Israeli icon,” the Tribune’s Israel correspondent Atara Beck wrote last week.

The article did not cite any sources critical of Shalit’s visit. He is to appear in Toronto, Montreal, Calgary and Vancouver.

The newspaper also published a letter referring to Shalit as a “stumblebum” and calling his visit a “dubious honor.”

The head of the Jewish National Fund of Canada, Shalit’s host for his Canada visit, told the Tribune that Shalit was not being honored by the JNF, but rather his visit was a way of thanking those in Canada who supported him during his captivity.

Technology in the Minds and Lives of Jewish Students

Friday, May 31st, 2013


Yishai presents an interview he recently recorded with Avital Aharon, Judaic studies & technology coordinator at Associated Hebrew Schools in Toronto. Yishai recently spoke in Toronto and had the opportunity to speak to students while there. They discuss how technology affects the minds and lives of young Jewish students and how technology has become an integral part of the student’s lives. Listen in!

Yishai Fleisher on Twitter: @YishaiFleisher
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Geller Raps Toronto Rabbis for ‘Loshon HaRa’

Thursday, May 16th, 2013

Pamela Geller, a controversial critic of radical Islam, has accused the Toronto Board of Rabbis for “loshon hara” in response to the clerics charging that she “is known for her extreme criticism of Muslims in language that is intended to shock and ridicule.”

The Toronto rabbis had criticized the Jewish Defense League of Canada for inviting Geller to speak at the Toronto Zionist Center on Monday after a Chabad rabbi surrendered to police pressure and cancelled her scheduled speech at his suburban Toronto synagogue.

The 50-member Board of Rabbis said it was “a strong supporter of freedom of speech for all, including Ms. Geller, [but] there was no sense in inviting her here to Toronto to speak before a Jewish audience.”

Calling her views “distasteful,” the Board added, “We dissociate ourselves from the actions of the radical fringe Jewish group that extended the invitation. We call for more events here in Toronto that will build up friendship and understanding between local Jews and Muslims.”

Geller blasted the rabbinical board for not contacting her or citing any quotes in her writings.

“Shame on you; shame on you,” she said of the board to applause. “They’re guilty of ‘lashon hara,’ the evil gossip that is a lie.”

Israel’s 6 Million Jews Makes It Largest Jewish Center

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

Israel’s Jewish population crossed the 6 million mark during Passover, a symbolic sign of peaceful vengeance for the approximately same number of Jews who were exterminated by the Nazi regime.

The Israel Jewish community, which compromises approximately 75 percent of the total population outside of Judea and Samaria, now is the largest in the world, depending on one’s definition of “Who is a Jew?”

The American Jewish population is estimated by most sources as being 5.5 million, while it is up to 2 million larger if one includes as Jewish those who were born to Jewish fathers but not to Jewish fathers and those who were not converted according to Jewish tradition.

The largest American Jewish population center is in New York City, with approximately 2 million. followed by nearly half a million in Paris.

There are approximately 380,000 Jews in Canada, with most of them living in metropolitan Toronto. Next in Line is Britain’s 290,000 Jews.

“In the world today there are 13,800,000 Jews,” Hebrew University Professor Sergio Della Pergola told the Yediot Acharonot newspaper.

“Israel has indeed experienced a growth in the number of Jews last year, but world Jewry outside Israel did not fare so well. On the contrary, world Jewry has experienced negative growth,” reflecting assimilation.

Although most of the world’s Jews live outside Israel, Israeli historian and author Tom Segev told the London Daily Telegraph, “Within five, seven or 10 years, you might be able to say that most Jews in the world live inside Israel, and it will be legitimate to use the cliché that for the first time in 2,000 years, the Jews are in Israel. Then the question will be, what do you do with the Zionist ideology?”

Israelis are attracted to metropolitan Tel Aviv, but massive government programs, including new highways and rail links, are trying to reverse the trend and encourage Jews to settle in the Negev and the Galilee.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/israels-6-million-jews-makes-it-largest-jewish-center/2013/03/28/

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