Michael Orbach

Michael Orbach is a staff writer of the Orthodox Union and ou.org.

Sin Got Your Goat?

September 30, 2014, by

According to tradition, on the day of Yom Kippur the Kohen Gadol transfers the sins of the Jewish people on to a goat that was then sent off into the wilderness (or off a mountain, depending on your interpretation). Since the Temple was destroyed, prayers and fasting take the place of the goat for atonement.

Confessions of a Shomer Shabbat Hollywood Screenwriter Part 2

January 15, 2014, by

In the most recent issue of Jewish Action magazine, Robert J. Avrech penned an article about what it’s like to be a successful Shomer Shabbos screenwriter in the bowels of Hollywood. He spoke about his article — and his new e-book describing his love affair with his wife, whom he met as a fourth grader in

The Sights and Sounds of NCSY’s Yarchei Kallah

January 9, 2014, by

In the Stamford Hilton’s ballroom — now transformed into a rather crowded shul — NCSY advisor Ayelet Roller led a discussion about the story of the Tower of Babel. Why, she asked, did Hashem, in the words of the parsha, “come down” to the people building the tower? The seven teens who surrounded her tossed

The President and His Rabbi: New Book Shines Light On Friendship Between President Bill Clinton and OU Kosher CEO Rabbi Menachem Genack

December 2, 2013, by

When his Republican opponents accused President Bill Clinton of flip-flopping between political positions he found solace in an unlikely place. It was a dvar Torah sent to him by Rabbi Menachem Genack, the CEO of the Orthodox Union’s Kosher Division and the rabbi of Congregation Shomrei Emunah in Englewood, NJ. In the note, Rabbi Genack laid

Thanksgivukkah

November 7, 2013, by

Eli Lansey is planning on deep-frying brussel sprouts, stuffing his turkey with latkes and baking cranberry sufganiyot. Yes, Thanksgivukkah, the once-in-a-great-while confluence of the first day of Chanukah and Thanksgiving, is upon us. Lansey, a physicist and graduate of Yeshiva University, was the first to point out the rare meeting of the two holidays way back

Reddit Posts Random Kiddush Hashem Photograph

November 6, 2013, by

Ever fall asleep on a subway train? The user who snapped the photograph explained. “Heading home on the Q train yesterday when this young black guy nods off on the shoulder of a Jewish man. The man doesn’t move a muscle, just lets him stay there. After a minute, I asked the man if he