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December 10, 2016 / 10 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘year’

WZO to Open 225 Hebrew Language Centers Worldwide Next Year

Wednesday, November 30th, 2016

In the coming week, emissaries of the World Zionist Organization (WZO) plan to open 11 new Hebrew language centers (ulpanim), in addition to the 220 existing facilities the group operates around the world, according to WZO Chairman Avraham Duvdevani who appeared on Tuesday before the Knesset Immigration and Absorption Committee.

Committee Chairman MK Avraham Nagosa (Likud) commended the WZO efforts, saying that “the Zionist journey is not over – as long as a single Jew is still living in the diaspora.”

Last year the WZO established 140 new Hebrew language centers, most of them in France, Argentina, and the UK.

Addressing Nagosa, who is an Ethiopian Jew, Duvdevani noted that Tuesday, Heshvan 29, was the Sigd holiday for Ethiopian Jews, when they traditionally expressed their yearning to ascend to Zion. Rooted in the verb “to worship” (lisgod, in Hebrew), Sigd commemorates two historic events in which the Jews of Ethiopia escaped annihilation by their neighbors. Duvdevani added that the WZO has been “overhauled” in the past six years, and today focuses on Jewish-Zionist education in diaspora. It employs more than 200 emissaries who teach in schools and ulpanim in Israel and abroad, fight anti-Semitism by collecting information and reactions, promotes Aliyah from Western countries as well as Zionist awareness in Israel.

According to Duvdevani, the WZO has increased its activity with Russian speaking Jews who immigrated to the West. “In this community we receive a strong response, since they seek a connection to Israel and Judasim.” The WZO is also active among some one million Israelis living in north America, for whom “we operate Jewish cultural centers, including establishing day schools for their children,” he added.


Spectacular 3,800 Year Old Pottery Vessel Excavated near Tel Aviv

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2016

A small, extraordinary jug from the Middle Bronze Age was revealed with the help of high school students who take Archaeology classes, in a recent Israel Antiquities Authority excavation in the town of Yehud just outside Tel Aviv. In ancient-treasure laden Israel, such excavation are routinely launched ahead of construction projects.

According to Gilad Itach, excavation director on behalf of the IAA, “It literally happened on the last day of the excavation, when right in front of our eyes and the of the thrilled students, an unusual ceramic vessel c. 18 cm high was exposed, bearing the image of a person. It appears that the jug, which is typical of the period, was prepared first, and afterwards the unique sculpture – the likes of which has never before been discovered – was added.”

“The level of precision and attention to detail in creating this almost 4,000 year old sculpture is truly impressive,” Itach noted, adding that “the neck of the jug served as a base for forming the upper portion of the figure, after which the arms, legs and a face were added to the sculpture. One can see that the face of the figure seems to be resting on its hand as if in a state of reflection. It is unclear if the figure was made by the potter who prepared the jug or by another craftsman.”

The jug, which was broken when it was found, being restored in the laboratories of the Israel Antiquities Authority in Jerusalem.

The jug, which was broken when it was found, being restored in the laboratories of the Israel Antiquities Authority in Jerusalem.

Efrat Zilber, coordinating supervisor of the Land of Israel and Archaeology matriculation stream in the Ministry of Education, emphasized that “the archaeological excavations provide an opportunity for an intensive and direct experience that connects the pupils with our country’s past. An experiential learning experience involving research methods employed in archaeology takes place while revealing the artifacts. The students meet experts in a variety of fields who share their knowledge with them, enriching them and their world”.

In addition to the unique pottery vessel, other vessels and metal items were found in the site, such as daggers, arrowheads, an axe head, sheep bones and what are very likely the bones of a donkey. According to Itach, “It appears that these objects are funerary offerings that were buried in honor of an important member of this ancient community. It was common in antiquity to believe that the objects that were interred alongside the individual continued with him into the next world. To the best of my knowledge, such a rich funerary assemblage that also includes such a unique pottery vessel has never before been discovered in our country.”

In addition, a variety of evidence regarding the kind of life that existed in the area 6,000 years ago was exposed – among other things, pits and shafts were revealed containing thousands of fragments of pottery vessels, hundreds of flint and basalt implements, animal bones, and a churn – a unique vessel that was widely used in the Chalcolithic period for making butter.

High school students working at the Yehud excavation.

High school students working at the Yehud excavation.

The students of the Land of Israel and Archaeology matriculation stream participate in excavations as part of the new training course offered by the IAA and the Ministry of Education, which seeks to connect them with the past and help prepare the archaeologists of the future. Students who choose this course as part of their alternative evaluation for high school matriculation take part in a week of excavation. They experience the variety of jobs involved in the excavation, discuss questions regarding research and archaeological considerations and document the excavations in a field diary as part of their research work.

“Suddenly I saw many archaeologists and important people arriving who were examining and admiring something that was uncovered in the ground” recalls Ronnie Krisher, a student at the Ha’Roeh religious girls’ high school in Ramat Gan. “They immediately called all of us to look at the amazing statuette and explained that this is an extremely rare discovery, one that’s not encountered every day. It is exciting to be part of an excavation whose artifacts will be displayed in a museum.”


Torah Academy Of Boca Raton Begins Year Of Explosive Growth

Thursday, November 3rd, 2016

Torah Academy of Boca Raton as begun the new school year with growth and expansion. The school has experienced a 20 percent increase in enrollment over last year. Torah Academy, which opened its doors in 1999 with 18 children, now has an enrollment of 365 students.

In order to keep up with the high demand, the school’s dean, Rabbi Reuven Feinberg, has organized a large, well-trained staff that enables Torah Academy to educate a broad range of students with an all-encompassing curriculum. The school’s goal is to continue to exceed national and state standards in Jewish and secular studies while maintaining its focus on the individual learner.

Rabbi Rafi Draiman

Rabbi Rafi Draiman

“It remains a top priority of ours to fill our classrooms with teachers who specialize in their subject matter and create a passion for learning in our students,” said Rabbi Feinberg.

Torah Academy has also welcomed a new headmaster, Rabbi Rafi Draiman, who believes the concept of “building” encompasses his philosophy and approach to education: “At Torah Academy, we are building students, building scholars, building self-esteem, and building the skills and knowledge that lead to success and meaningful accomplishment.”

Rabbi Draiman is no stranger to personal accomplishment and extensive study. The Chicago native’s training and experience in the field of education is impressive: he holds a Masters in educational administration from Loyola University and principal certificates from the Harvard Graduate School Principals’ Institute, NYC Leadership Academy, and Jewish Leadership Institute. He has served as director of the Principal Training Institute at the Consortium of Jewish Day Schools and has mentored for the Azrieli Graduate School of Education at Yeshiva University. He has been a school administrator for many years, most recently at Yeshiva of South Shore in Hewlett, New York.

For more information about Torah Academy of Boca Raton call 561-465-2200 or e-mail office@torahacademubr.org.

Shelley Benveniste

Abbas Pardons PA Officer Sentenced to a Year in Prison for Critical Facebook Post

Thursday, October 13th, 2016

PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas issued a presidential pardon on Wednesday, releasing officer Osama Mansour after a Ramallah military court sentenced him to a year in prison for publishing a Facebook post that was critical of Abbas. Abbas decreed that Mansour be retired from security forces instead of serving time in prison.

A PA military court in Ramallah sentenced Osama Mansour, a PA military liaison officer, to a year in prison and suspended his military rank for criticizing PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas on social media for attending the Shimon Peres funeral, Ma’an reported.

Mansour’s son said earlier that his father’s sentence was awaiting final approval from Abbas. Mansour was charged with “disobeying orders” after being detained on Oct. 1 for publishing a post on his Facebook page asking Abbas not to attend the funeral.

Mansour was director of public relations and media at the PA military liaison, the unit that coordinates security with Israel. In his post, he pointed out the irony of Abbas offering his condolences for Peres, “founder of settlement activity,” while condemning Israeli settlements.

“Whether (Peres) was a terrorist or not, whether he invented the policy of breaking bones during the First Intifada or not, whether he was involved in the Jenin refugee camp massacre, the massacre of the al-Yasmin neighborhood in [Shechem], or the massacre of Qana — who is he that you are going to partake in his funeral while the majority of the people you represent oppose him?” the post read.

“There should be no personal or friendly relations with the occupier, as long as they continue with their arrogant policies against our people,” declared the post by a PA official in charge of cooperation with Israel.

In August, NGO Human Rights Watch (HRW) released a report showing PA security forces had detained activists, including rap musicians, for criticizing the PA corruption and its security cooperation with Israel.


Southern NCSY Kicks Off Another Year

Monday, October 10th, 2016

Southern NCSY began its 2016-2017 school year with some controlled MADNESS at Ninja Lounge in Miami where over 370 teens rocked a kick-off event. Teens jumped on trampolines, chilled with friends in the lounge, took pics at the photo booth, and had networking opportunities to learn about upcoming NCSY events. Midnight Madness was the first event of the year and it really started things off right.

Jewish teens enjoying Southern NCSY’s Midnight Madness at Ninja Lounge.

Jewish teens enjoying Southern NCSY’s Midnight Madness at Ninja Lounge.


In addition to a successful evening at Ninja Lounge, Southern NCSY offers a wide selection of events, programs, shabbatons, and summer trips. Southern NCSY is especially proud to have hit record numbers in attendance at its weekly Latte and Learn, during which Jewish teenagers from various schools come together once a week to reconnect with their Jewish friends and get a weekly dose of Torah. Each chapter runs its own event. In Hollywood, a record number of over 100 teens gathered at the kosher Dunkin’ Donuts on Sterling Road. NCSY also reports record numbers in Boca Raton, Aventura, and Miami Beach.

Southern NCSY is looking forward to great things this year – new chapters, new programs, and new staff members. It’s never been a better time to be a Jewish teen in Southern NCSY.

To find out about the many programs, events, and opportunities offered by Southern NCSY, visit www.southern.ncsy.org.

Shelley Benveniste

Shiloh Musings: U.S. VP’s are More Than Just Postscripts This Year

Thursday, October 6th, 2016

If you go over the history of the United States, not all that many Vice Presidents took over the Presidency. And during the campaigns, most were forgettable or worse. But this year’s/next month’s American Presidential Elections have an element that rarely if ever seen. Not only is the sum total of the Presidential candidates’ ages higher than ever, 139, but neither has been very open about her/his current health situation. If you have the time and patience to calculate click here for the Wikipedia listings of candidates.

Does this mean that seventy is all that ancient? Gd forbid! But in 2008, Obama, who was all of  47, made John McCain’s age, 72, an election issue.

This year the Americans are choosing between two retirement age candidates, and for that reason, let’s take a quick look at their Veep choices aka running mates.

Like Hillary’s kissing Suha Arafat after her anti-Israel speech filled with lies, the Democratic nominee, Tim Kaine,  is haunted by his boycott of Bibi’s speech to Congress. From my perch here in Shiloh, Israel, I don’t like what I see coming from the Democratic Party.

In all honesty, I know even less about Trump’s Veep,  Mike Pence. Considering that Trump has no congressional experience, I’d think he’d draft someone with a good track record. Remember that JFK never managed to pass his platform, and it was the congressional power house, Lyndon B. Johnson, who got the job done when he assumed the presidency after Kennedy was assassinated. So the information I just read in Wikipedia “During Pence’s twelve years in the House, he introduced 90 bills and resolutions; none became law.[42]” may not be good for Trump.

May Gd save us all…

Batya Medad

Soul Talk – Secrets to a Really Really Happy New Year [audio]

Tuesday, October 4th, 2016

There are many concepts connected to the High Holiday’s: Rosh HaShannah and Yom Kippur that are essential to properly understand in order to make the most of the opportunity of the holidays.

What does it mean that G-d has the book of life and death open during this time? What bad decrees are we trying to avert through mending our ways? What is the power of Repentance, Prayer and Charity giving in revoking these bad decrees?

Join Rabbi David Aaron on Soul Talk to gain a better understanding of essential High Holiday concepts and enter the holidays with clarity and focus.

We welcome your questions and comments. Send us an e-mail at soultalk@israelnewstalkradio.com

Soul Talk 02Oct2016 – PODCAST

Israel News Talk Radio

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/multimedia/israel-news-talk-radio/soul-talk/soul-talk-secrets-to-a-really-really-happy-new-year-audio/2016/10/04/

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