Heroic efforts to preserve the Yiddish language in Israel

Did you know that there is a little-known group of intellectuals who labor to keep alive “Mameloshn“,  the tongue of their Yiddish-speaking ancestors? To find it, just go to Tel Aviv and look for the Leyvik House. Since 1970 Leyvik House serves as home to the Association of Yiddish Writers and Journalists in Israel and to the… Read More

The Great Tu B’shevat Blizzard of 2016

Jews pray for geshem – rain, and for tal – dew, for Israel… each in its season.  Jews do not pray for sheleg – snow…ever… and certainly not on Tu B’shevat. And SNOW, weather prayed for or not, came to Tu B’shevat this year in the guise of Winter Storm Jonas. Frenzied storm preparations, blizzard… Read More

Rachel Corrie’s fight for human injustice

Just a few weeks ago I was asked, ever so inclusively, to represent our pro-Israel group at the University of Virginia in a panel held after the showing of the play My Name is Rachel Corrie. First off, I would like to thank the director of the play for choosing to include my voice in… Read More

The Chanukah story retold

When the Macabees, or as they were called by some, the HUCKABEES came marching in to Jerusalem up the HILARY to the temple, they found that the SANTORUM had been desecrated by the Syrians.   The first thing they decided to do was to dedicate and re-CHRISTIE it so the place would be holy again and… Read More

‘Bad Jews’: a personal review

I’m always struck after I attend a play how the theater’s rest room assumes the nature of an agora where audience members voice and discuss their reactions to the performance with friends and even strangers. So it was last year as I entered the rest room of the Studio Theater at the conclusion of Bad… Read More

Refugees: A Jewish response to the Jewish response

Thank you Mr. Hetfield for your clear and well written thoughts about the immigration issue. We all struggle as Jews to understand what God wants from us. Yours is indeed a Jewish response to immigration.  It is not “the” Jewish response.  I respect it. Here is another very different, but I think more true and… Read More

My savta, my rabbi

My granddaughter, Noa Rebecca Ende Yager, celebrated her Bat Mitzvah last weekend with a tribute to curiosity. She read from B’reisheet, the first chapter of the first book of Genesis. Noa was poised and confident, full of joy as always. Her sincerity, so touching in a twelve-year-old, was manifest in the set of her shoulders,… Read More

Abraham and Sarah

Abraham and Sarah. Their names evoke a picture of the founders of the Jewish people – a couple known for their dedication to their flock, and to each other.   Abraham and Sarah brought people together, taught them about G-d, and built a people and a community. As a boy growing up in the Woodside neighborhood… Read More