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Life

Top 4 Ways to Teach Your Kids How to Pray

September 15, 2016, by

Knowing how to pray is probably one of the most essential tools that a Jew needs to live his life in a meaningful way. It is through prayer that we connect with G-d. It is an anchor in times of trouble. It gives solace and is a healthy outlet for our anger at the injustices

Top 5 Ways to Make Your Fast Easier

August 8, 2016, by

Here are some quick tips to make your fast a bit more bearable: 1. The day before the fast begins, take frequent drinks of water. 2. Eat a balanced meal before the fast. Proteins and fats are absorbed more slowly than sugars and provide the necessary energy, but you should balance your meal with 55% complex carbohydrates,

Is Everything Forgivable?

September 16, 2015, by

“No matter how many times I attempt to apologize, it will never be enough. There are simply no words available to sufficiently assuage the hurt that I caused among conversion candidates, congregants, students, family, friends, and rabbinic and academic colleagues. I am sorry, beyond measure, for my heinous behavior and perverse mindset that provoked my

The 8 Item Repentance Checklist

September 16, 2015, by

Can you check off these items? If not, which one will you strengthen?   The purpose of this checklist is to focus your attention to areas you may want to improve. Look over this list and choose one area you are motivated to address. Just focus on that area and once you have strengthened it,

Breaking the Fast with a Fast Trip Across the Street, Chicago Style

September 7, 2015, by

You think you have a big crowd coming to your house to break the Yom Kippur fast? Not compared to my friend Marsha, you don’t. This September, Marsha and her husband, Brian, along with another couple, will be co-hosting the Ninth Annual Easy Access Break-Fast for the families of her Chicago shul. Marsha lives across

Kreplach Time: Recipe for Erev Yom Kippur

October 1, 2014, by

What’s for lunch? Kreplach are on the menu this Friday. A traditional food before Yom Kippur, kreplach are meat-filled dough dumplings served in soup that can provide the necessary carbohydrates and protein to sustain one throughout the fast. They serve both a physical and a spiritual purpose, symbolizing our hopes that G-d will envelop His

Circles of Change

October 2, 2011, by

This article first appeared in The Jewish Press on September 27, 2011 and has been reprinted with permission. It was the kind of event I attend frequently these days, and I was in a role in which I often find myself. It was a Jewish gathering to which a number of political officials had been

The Memorial Prayer Service: Yizkor

October 2, 2011, by

Yizkor is the memorial service recited for deceased parents and other relatives at several points throughout the year. The name of the prayer means “May He remember” (“He” being God and “Yizkor” being the first word of the prayer). Not only do many who recite the prayer find it to be a moving, emotional experience,

Re’eh: Teshuvah

August 25, 2011, by

The day specifically mentioned in the Torah as the day of atonement is the tenth of Tishrei, Yom Kippur, but the entire ten days from Rosh HaShana until Yom Kippur are also called the “Ten days of repentance”. And to a lesser extent the entire month of Elul is devoted to repentance as well. For

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