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As a member of numerous congregations over the past 60 years, I have heard the commandment for Jews to heal the world, tikkun olam, countless times. Saving one life saves the universe. I am very familiar with the Holocaust, and I have studied recounts of the lives of Righteous Gentiles like …

A friend of mine has breast cancer. She is one of many women I’ve known who have suffered with this disease. Fortunately, it was caught in time, and with aggressive treatment she will survive.

Ten months ago, I suffered domestic violence from my wife. My child and I have lived with the consequences ever since. They will shape my daughter’s life even longer and more dramatically than mine.

“There are decades when nothing happens, and weeks when decades happen.”

Our Sages tell us, “According to the effort is the reward.” (Ethics of the Fathers 5:26). This is similarly expressed in another popular quote, “The greater the effort, the sweeter the reward.”

We appreciate last week’s article “Bureau of Jewish Education celebrates 50th anniversary this month” in the Jewish News, but we also wanted to offer some personal reflections on being part of the Bureau of Jewish Education, how it’s impacted our own Jewish journey and what it means going forward.

Soon we will gather in the synagogue to celebrate another year as the old one disappears and a new one takes shape. What kind of year is passing and what kind of a year lies ahead? These are just two of the questions we will ask ourselves as we do each year at this time.

Approximately once a year I go with my parents to Old Montefiore Cemetery in Queens, New York. Always in the Elul heat, I walk up to the metal gates inscribed with our family’s burial society name in Yiddish, “Chevra Adas Jacob Anshe Slabodke.” This is holy ground. My center of gravity shift…

Ten years ago, I sat shocked watching a new music video from one of my creative Jewish heroes, Matisyahu. Newly married and studying in yeshiva, my husband and I were trying to figure out how to uplift the art world in alignment with our Orthodox Torah ideals.

Pluralism has always been a central part of my Jewish identity, both in college and growing up in Pittsburgh. My family is affiliated with New Light — the Conservative congregation where my father serves as rabbi — as well as Orthodox congregations. My three grandparents attend congregations…

Arizona now requires Holocaust education in public schools, and people are designing a new curriculum to comply. I am a retired Arizona teacher, and one summer when I was working in a graduated care facility in Scottsdale, I faced a reality that accentuated the importance of that history.

As a child, I remember swimming in the sky blue, sparkling clean water of the Ben Weider community center in Montreal, Canada, where I was raised. I took for granted that this was simply how pool water looked all the time — until I moved to sunny, warm Tucson to serve as a Chabad rabbi, and …

In my pediatric practice, I ask about bullying: “Are there any bullies or mean kids in your school?” or “Have you ever gotten picked on?” Parents will occasionally nod their heads, but children nearly always respond affirmatively.

I’m writing this from Miami, 10 minutes from the beach. There are many reasons to be here — the beach, the sun, the culture. And there are many reasons not to be here. As my grandma keeps calling to tell me, COVID rates are skyrocketing in Florida, and maybe it’s not the best place to be rig…

A few months ago, my father-in-law was thumbing through my son’s new book about Judaism, which my aunt had sent him. That same weekend I was invited to a virtual seder with more than 20 people from across the United States and Israel.

Across the globe, people from all walks of life came together Monday, the 17th of the Hebrew month of Menachem Av, which corresponds with July 26, to mark the one-year anniversary of the passing of my beloved mentor, Rabbi Adin Even-Israel Steinsaltz of saintly memory. 

In my capacity as the director of the nonprofit group Alliance for Israel, I hear many stories from across the United States of people who have been ostracized and attacked for their public displays of Judaism and Zionism. Hearing those stories, coupled with the more violent attacks that mad…

Fasting and praying for 25  hours — many of them sweltering — isn’t anyone’s idea of summer vacation. But that’s not the only reason Tisha B’Av (the 9th day of the Hebrew month of Av, which begins Saturday night at sundown) is among the least observed days on the Jewish calendar, despite its…

Bullying is happening in our community, and we can no longer be silent about it.

In July of 2015, my wife, Malka, and I moved to Phoenix from Chicago with our three young children. We were excited for the April Pride Parade and showed up with zeal and enthusiasm after many years at the Chicago Pride Parade. We were saddened to learn there was no organized Jewish presence…

COVID-19 is still with us, and that’s an ever-present factor in our day-to-day operations at the Human Services Campus, even with minimal positive cases and continuing vaccinations. We received permission from the Arizona Department of Public Health to add some indoor seating, reducing the d…

In light of the recent uptick of antisemitism, and the two vandalism attacks on synagogues in Tucson, the Jewish Community Relations Council has been working behind-the-scenes to help the Jewish community attain support to be more secure in this time of crisis — and it has been using public …

On June 15, 2012, I was attending the American Immigration Lawyers Association conference when President Obama made an announcement that was life-changing to hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrant youths. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals quickly became the saving grace for man…

The people of this country are blessed. The unprecedented speed of development and deployment of the vaccine for COVID-19 has brought us to a place where with G-d’s continued help and blessing, we can hope that the worst of the pandemic is behind us.

The eight unlikely parties in Israel’s change coalition reflect the political contortions elements of Israel’s ideological leadership are willing to endure in order to separate from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The coalition parties, and some of their leaders, deserve praise for checki…

The announcement last week that Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) is leading a group of Jewish and Black senators in establishing a coalition to fight antisemitism and racism is welcome news. Booker is a good friend of the Jewish community, and we are pleased to see that he has already been joined b…

This coming Sunday, Jews worldwide will commemorate 27 years since the passing of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of blessed memory.

The past school year has tested everyone. We have learned much about education, technology and ourselves. While more people get vaccinated and consider taking a long-awaited summer vacation, there is something else to consider — the summer slump.

June is Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month — an annual reminder that Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias are a major public health issue. In fact, according to the Alzheimer’s Association, more than 50 million people worldwide are living with Alzheimer’s disease or dementias, includ…

In reacting and speaking out about the tragic violence endured by Israelis and Palestinians in recent weeks, I’ve noticed a disturbing pattern; the adoption, by some political figures on America’s progressive left, of language and frameworks of questionable validity that have, previously, be…

A recent national poll from Grinnell College found that 96% of Americans believe that free and fair elections are important to our democracy. The same poll showed only 53% of Americans are confident that the votes of the 2022 election will be counted correctly.

My fellow citizens of Israel: I am very concerned about the difficult scenes we are witnessing on the streets. I call and plead with all leaders, citizens, parents — do everything in your power to stop the terrible thing that is happening.

In January 2018, anticipating my retirement from Jewish Family & Children’s Service, I called Mark Searle, Arizona State University’s provost. I hoped ASU would be interested in collaborating with the Jewish community to conduct the research for a Jewish population study. Searle and I ha…

Thursday, April 29th, we had the honor of visiting the Navajo Nation in Northern Arizona along with six Arizona Jews for Justice volunteers.

This past week on Lag B’Omer a terrible tragedy struck in Meron in the midst of what ought to have been joyous celebrations. The phenomenon of simcha turning into sorrow is, unfortunately, not as rare as it should be in Israel. That is because for all of Israel’s advances in science, especia…

Israel’s largest religious festival turned into its largest peacetime tragedy late last week, as 45 celebrants were crushed to death, and dozens more were injured, under the feet of fellow worshippers in a horrific stampede at Mount Meron.

On April 20, Jewish News published “IHRA amendment threatens to stall Arizona Holocaust education bill,” which clearly explains the current situation regarding House Bill 2241. That bill would require all Arizona schools to teach about the Holocaust and other genocides at least twice between…

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