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OU President Moishe Bane on Three Existential Threats to American Orthodoxy

February 15, 2018, by

The Hebrew Theological College hosted nearly 250 guests on January 27 at their 37th Annual Melave Malka in Skokie, Illinois. During the evening emceed by Rabbi Yehiel Kalish, Rabbi Shmuel L. Schuman, CEO of HTC, presented the Rabbi Herman Davis Memorial Scholarships to a most deserving beis midrash and college student, Zalman Cohen. The highlight

Can People Change?

February 15, 2018, by

How we really try. So much money and effort is spent on self improvement. Books, courses, psychoanalysis, psychotherapy. But do we ever really change? Are we bound to the redundancy of our habits and set patterns…stuck and unable to change? What does Judaism say about change? The Torah and its mitzvos, our rabbinical laws and

The Hebrew Hammer and Life’s Platinum Medal

It’s a first for my wife.  She’s obsessed with this year’s Winter Olympics. To be more specific, she’s interested only in the sliding competition and, as a result, is building her schedule (and that of the entire family) around it.  Why?  His name is AJ Edelman, the first Orthodox Jew to compete in the Olympics.

Vashti’s Pimples

February 14, 2018, by

Mishenichnas Adar, when Adar begins, we increase many things. Rejoicing, for sure. And practical preparations for Purim, naturally: we’re choosing costumes and mishloach manot themes (or non-themes; no judgment here!), we’re planning our seudot, and we’re scheduling our Megilah readings. And of course, we’re teaching our children the story of Purim. Too often, we’re teaching

Death Be Not Proud

February 13, 2018, by

I say the following without irony: if you find discussions of death upsetting or triggering, skip this article. I’ve been wanting to write about death for some time now but I’ve postponed it because of various passings and people I know who were in aveilus (mourning). I didn’t want to talk about death when people

He Donated his Kidney to a Complete Stranger

February 8, 2018, by

What does a 68-year-old Conservative Jewish man from Cranford, New Jersey have in common with a 42 year old Hasidic man originally from London? A kidney. Earlier this year, Yosef Leib Bornstein, a Ger Hasid donated his kidney to Dave Salomon through the help of Renewal, a non-profit which facilitates altruistic kidney donations. Jew in

How Do We Make Our Kids Love Shabbos? It Starts with Us.

February 8, 2018, by

Shabbos. The word connotes many wonderful memories from growing up: Going to shul with my father on Friday night; my mother’s fricassee; constructing blanket tents with my siblings. But in truth, it also brings back memories of looking at the clock, counting how many hours were left until it was over. I remember years when

The Storms That Move Us

February 7, 2018, by

“If you don’t speak up, you’re part of the problem.” This sentiment appears in my Facebook newsfeed fairly regularly, in response to whatever atrocity has most recently been perpetuated against whichever individual/group/idea/etc. And to be honest, it stresses me out. Sometimes it’s obvious that whatever happened is indeed an atrocity, but sometimes I feel that

Have We Learned Nothing?

February 6, 2018, by

You may have heard of the tragic accident last week in which a train hit a garbage truck. The train was carrying Republican members of Congress, including House Speaker Paul Ryan, to a retreat in West Virginia. Neither the politicians nor their families were seriously injured but a passenger in the truck was killed. And

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