Area Orthodox leaders object to OU maharat ruling

Four area leaders of Orthodox organizations are among 28 signatories of a letter objecting to the Orthodox Union’s position barring women clergy at its 400 member congregations. “Historically the Orthodox Union has been a big tent organization that embraced and served all forms of Orthodox Judaism,” the Sept. 12 letter — addressed to OU Executive Vice… Read More

The Torah reviews its memories

Special to WJW. This week’s Torah portion is Nitzavim-Vayelech, Deuteronomy 29:9 – 31:30. As people age and realize they are nearing the end of their lives, they begin a process called life review. Life review is different for each person, but it involves a return to memories, such as our actions and the people we’ve… Read More

The difference between entertainment and extravagance

Entertaining loads of friends and family over the holidays is expensive enough just for food. Adding several bottles of wine costing $30 or more at each meal can easily tip the balance between entertainment and extravagance. So here are more modest options to consider. Cantine del Borgo Reale, Prosecco Brut, (Non-Vintage), Italy ($18; mevushal): This… Read More

Asa Fradkin working to build youthful voices

When he took over as cantor of Congregation Beth El of Montgomery County in Bethesda, Asa Fradkin learned he wouldn’t have a designated parking spot. And that’s fine with him. None of the Conservative congregation’s leadership gets a spot. Fradkin, 36, says that’s emblematic of Beth El’s egalitarian, collaborative attitude. “I can’t think of a… Read More

Bolton delivers strong warning on 9/11 anniversary

Former U.N. ambassador John Bolton marked the 16th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks by warning of an impending nuclear threat from Iran and North Korea. “North Korea and Iran don’t pose a military danger to the United States. Their principal threat is to kill innocent American civilians,” he told an audience from the… Read More

Jewish humor in serious times

Toward the end of Rabbi Joseph Telushkin’s talk on Jewish humor Sunday, the best-selling author told a joke about the Jewish outlook on the world: “One day, a man says, ‘You know what? I’m an optimist.’ Another says, ‘If you’re an optimist, why are you so worried?’ He says, ‘You think it’s easy being an… Read More