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Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Features

Memories of Another Bad Winter

As we suffered through another in a never-ending series of snowstorms here in northeast New Jersey, I was reminded that we just celebrated the 45th anniversary of the Great Snowstorm of February 9, 1969, also known as—for reasons that will be explained later—“The Lindsay Storm.” As bad as it has been around here this winter, that storm was

Mazel Tov

June 2013

Suddenly the bride felt faint. The pounding of the music was relentless as the band grew closer. Oblivious to her discomfort, tearful relatives and smiling friends hastily lined up in two long rows to face her while they clapped their hands and sang along to Od Yeshoma. As she smoothed the bridal veil, her mother leaned in and kissed her

BPY Honors Judy Heicklen: A Woman of the World

Teaneck—It makes sense that Judy Heicklen, President of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance (JOFA), was initially trained as a CPA because her words and deeds actually add up. Heicklen, who today is also a Managing Director at Credit Suisse, says that what fundamentally drives her and Judaism is tikkun olam, repairing the world, and that is exactly what she strives

Folksbiene Focuses on Purim

Riverdale—This season the National Yiddish-Folksbiene is concentrating on Purim with the return of The Megile of Itzik Manger and an evening of Purim Shpils, free to the public, in addition to a series of free programs and schmoozes on Yiddish culture. The NY Post gave last year’s production of The Megile four stars (the TimeOut NY loved it,too), and the

Tel Aviv’s Religious Reawakening

I have always valued Tel Aviv’s importance as Israel’s largest economic hub and as a leading center for medicine and education. I also appreciate its wonderful museums, parks, and performing arts venues. As Tel Aviv is known for its hip atmosphere and famous 24-hour culture, I never expected the city to become a destination for

Parshat Vayakhel: “Culture, Counter-Culture, and Creativity”

It was quite a few years ago that I spent almost every Sunday afternoon in one of the great museums of the city in which my family then lived. I no longer remember what first stimulated my interest in art, and specifically in the type of art known as Impressionism. But I know that I relished those Sunday afternoons, as did my youngest daughter, then no more than six or

Teaching Tolerance

In case you didn’t hear, an Orthodox high school in New York permitted two girls to wear tefillin at school (this also happens to be the school where I teach). The firestorm following this decision focused on a few major issues, with both participants and observers alike compelled to take a side.

Although debating right and wrong is important (if

Mystery and Magic

Jewish biblical exegesis operates on multiple levels. Rashi, who nearly a millennium later remains the most influential exegete, employed two methods of interpretation: Peshat, which is concerned with the plain sense of Scripture, and derash, which adds narrative or normative content to the written Torah from the midrashim of the Sages. Both

Vayakhel: Offerings from the Heart

Rabbi Chezky Markovitz knew that second grade was not where he was meant to be. True, he had just finished his semichah program and had been ordained as a rabbi only two months earlier and under the circumstances he was glad to find any teaching job on such short notice (Rabbi Blass had left with diverticulitis—indefinite leave), but he wanted more. He

Nancy or Tonya?

There are many types of people in this world. There are nice ones, not nice ones, and ones that pretend to be nice, but really aren’t. There are people who do good for others because their hearts are pure and there are people who do good for others so they can tell people they did good for others. We have charitable people, cheap people, nasty people, cranky

A Special Bat- Mitzvah in Israel

A celebration was hosted at Emunah’s Bet Elezraki Children’s Home for At-Risk Children in Netanya in honor of our daughter, Racheli Schachter’s bat mitzvah. Racheli and five bat-mitzvah age girls from the Home went to a salon together and then for ice cream by the shore. The girls were so friendly and warm; they all got along so well and had a lot of

Ruchama King Feuerman Speaks at Ahavath Torah 3/5

Englewood—Ruchama King Feuerman, author of the new novel, In the Courtyard of the Kabbalist, published by New York Review of Books, will be the featured speaker at a luncheon co-sponsored by Englewood’s  Congregation Ahavath Torah’s Dor LeDor division and Congregation Shomrei Emunah on Wednesday, March 5th at noon at Congregation