TISHREI: Tools & Techniques for Family-Friendly Festival

September 2, 2015, by

I am excited to be presenting with Devorah Levine Katz as part of the Orthodox Union’s Tishrei Lunchbreak Webinar on Sept. 9. As I look through my material and try to figure out what is relevant and interesting, I keep on thinking about how difficult it is for parents, particularly  mothers, to use Elul to

When Was the Last Time You Had Goosebumps?

August 31, 2015, by

Follow your heart. I Love you with all my heart. Have a heart. Wounded heart. Heartache. Heartbroken. Disheartened. It is clear that of all organs in the body, the heart is the accepted symbol of emotion. But this metaphor is not only employed by our English vernacular. The Torah itself promotes this symbolism. “V’yadata ha’yom

Why Rabbi Kelemen is Mistaken About Kids Leaving Religion

August 31, 2015, by

Last summer, The Jewish Action featured a panel of experts answering the “tough questions.” One of the panelists was the great Rabbi Lawrence (Leib) Kelemen of Neve and Mussar Vaad fame. The question he was asked was: “Why are so many kids off the Derech?” (That’s their term. I don’t use it.) Rabbi Kelemen starts

Meet OU Kosher’s Phyllis Koegal

August 28, 2015, by

Phyllis Koegel is the marketing director of OU Kosher. She was profiled last year in an article in Tablet Magazine that highlighted the important work she does on behalf of kosher consumers everywhere. In the next few months, Phyllis will be writing occasional articles about her experience in the kosher industry. If you keep kosher,

Go Back to School With OU-JLIC’s New College Magazine

August 26, 2015, by

As the school year begins again, the OU is proud to present its first-ever OU-Jewish Learning Initiative on Campus (JLIC) Guide to Colleges. Get great info on choosing the right campus, profiles of top 25 schools a guide to kosher meal plans and more! You can view the guide below or download a PDF version

An Unexpected Kiddush Hashem on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!”

August 26, 2015, by

An important part of being Jewish is the notion of Kiddush Hashem—sanctifying God’s name through good deeds. Late night TV host Jimmy Kimmel has a bit about how long it’ll take people to help someone who asks for help on the sidewalk of Hollywood. In this case, a man dressed as Spongebob SquarePants. It took

Conquering Disbelief in Our Students and Teenagers

August 26, 2015, by

In shul one morning, my should-have-been-intense concentration on prayer was interrupted by the persistent entreaties of a gentleman collecting for the needy. His story of woe was accompanied by a glossy pamphlet and approbations from numerous grand (but mostly unfamiliar) rabbis. I was not so easily taken in. My cynicism was aroused, as it too

Headaches and Head Coverings Part II

August 25, 2015, by

Headaches and Head Coverings received an inordinate amount of attention when we posted it last week. On Torah Musing, the blog where the story was originally posted, the following fascinating exchange took place between  Dr. Tovia Berk, a Headache Medicine Fellow, and the post’s original author, Rabbi Alex Ozar. My name is Tovia Berk – I

Matisyahu Sings Jerusalem at Spanish Festival

August 25, 2015, by

After being boycotted from the festival for not endorsing a Palestinian State, Matisyahu was re-invited to the Rototom SunSplash festival. During his performance, he was heckled by Pro-Palestinian activists and faced with a sea of Palestinian flags, he sang one of his best songs.

Rabbi & Plumbers: Is the Iran Deal Just Politics?

August 25, 2015, by

The Jewish community is undeniably split regarding the highly controversial Iran deal. Sadly, rather than focusing on advocating the merits or demerits of the deal, too many on both sides of the issue have resorted to ad hominem attacks, name calling, questioning of motives and dismissing the positions of others as just politics. This week’s

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