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Aaron Panken Named President of Reform Movement’s Rabbinical School

Rabbi Aaron Panken has been elected president of the U.S. Reform movement’s rabbinical school. The Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion announced the decision made by its board of governors on Wednesday. Panken, 49, of Mamaroneck, N.Y., has taught rabbinic and Second Temple literature at HUC-JIR in New York since 1995. He has served as [...]

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American Orthodox Community Condemns Shas Rabbi’s Comments Against National-Religious

The Orthodox Union and Rabbinical Council of America issued a joint statement on Monday condemning Shas member Rabbi Shalom Cohen’s use of the term “Amalek” to characterize the leaders of the national-religious community. The two organizations, which represent the centrist stream of American Orthodoxy, released the statement just prior to Tisha Be’av, pleading for Jews [...]

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Tens of Thousands Mourn at Western Wall

Tens of thousands of Jewish worshippers began flocking to the Western Wall plaza on Monday evening to commemorate the destruction of the First and Second Temple in Jerusalem as part of the fast day of Tisha B’Av. The believers are sitting on the ground barefoot as a sign of mourning, reading the Book of Lamentations [...]

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I Am the Egg (Wo)Man: Reflections on Rosh Chodesh Av & Tisha B’Av

The first 9 days of Av are seen in traditional Judaism as days of, if not mourning, then solemnity. We do not feast, we do not celebrate; we are once again living through the days leading up to the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem. And, as many have already noted, one of the most significant [...]

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Tradition Today: Rebuilding the Temple

One hears a great deal these days – especially in this season of Tisha Be’av – about the restoration of the Temple. Perhaps it would be worthwhile to contemplate some facts concerning the building of the Temple in the past. The construction of a permanent building to replace the Mishkan, the tent that had been [...]

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OU Kinnot Webcasts Enrich Tisha B’Av from Jerusalem to Florida

The Orthodox Union (OU) has developed an innovative approach to help Jews worldwide interpret kinnot, the elegies that are recited on Tisha B’Av to mourn the destructions of the Temples in Jerusalem as well as other tragedies throughout the centuries of Jewish history. Kinnot are known to be quite difficult to understand, as most were [...]

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Parashat Matot-Masei: The Chief Rabbi’s Role

I write this commentary just as the date was announced for elections for Israel’s chief rabbis, and just after the disgraceful public utterance of unsubstantiated vilification by a former chief rabbi against a leading candidate for the chief rabbinate – which in turn was followed by screaming headlines informing us of the “house arrest” of [...]

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Shul Destroyed by Fire, Being Rebuilt

Get close enough to the building that used to house the Hebrew Congregation of Woodmont and you’ll get a whiff of its burnt-out interior, empty since an Oct. 14 fire ravaged the building. Things are finally looking up for the beleaguered temple, however. On Sunday, about 150 supporters and dignitaries turned out for the ground-breaking for [...]

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Princesses of Long Island: Not Good For The Jews (Or, Really, Anyone)

Chanel: Well, here we are again. I don’t like saying things like this, but watching this show makes me feel like a traitor to the Jewish people. Jordyn: The show starts with quick shots of Hebrew, images of Jewish Texts, and folks milling around a Temple. Amanda, one of the shows princesses, quotes an old [...]

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Soncino English Talmud Sanhedrin with Important Content

Talmudic Books has published Soncino Babylonian Talmud Sanhedrin - the classic English edition of this important tractate. My son Yitz reminded me that my father, Rabbi Dr. Zev Zahavy, who passed away on May 1, 2012, used to say that Sanhedrin was his favorite Talmud tractate. Here is the book description, adapted from the Introduction: [...]

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Turkey’s Jews Worship Quietly

As visitors heave open the thick, vault-like metal door to the Neve Shalom Synagogue on a discreet side street in the Galata neighborhood of European Istanbul, a skittish guard confronts them. Guests are shuttled through secure, windowless rooms to an X-ray machine and metal detector. Pockets are emptied and passports surrendered. The guard questions the [...]

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BBC Pulls Documentary Claiming Story of Jewish Exodus from Jerusalem is a ‘Myth’

An Israeli-born filmmaker is slamming the British Broadcasting Corp. for pulling his documentary on the Jewish exodus from Jerusalem in 70 A.D. Ilan Ziv said in a blog post on April 27 that the BBC exhibited “a mixture of incompetence, political naivete, conscious or subconscious political pressure and ultimately, I believe, a lack of courage [...]

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AllJewishLinks.com Newsletter Issue # 76 - May 1, 2013

Poland’s prime minister said his government has drafted new regulations that would reduce the suffering of animals during slaughter, including for the needs of religious groups like Jews and Muslims. Poland is covered by European Union laws allowing for ritual slaughter, but the country’s own regulations say that an animal must be stunned before slaughter, [...]

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Inventing the Past: Michael Broyde and Morton Smith

The Jewish Channel’s Steven I. Weiss continued his outstanding investigative reporting with a new story on Rabbi Michael Broyde of Emory University, “Investigation Reveals Additional Questionable Identity With Connections to Broyde’s Scholarship”. It now appears certain that Broyde invented letters by two imaginary rabbis to support his opinions on religious matters. Weiss also found that [...]

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Have a Beer, It’s Lag b’Omer!

Sit back by the bonfire and pop open a brewski, it’s Lag b’Omer. Since we have been counting the Omer - a biblical measure of barley that was brought as an offering to the Temple - each evening from the second night of Passover, what better way to mark the coming holiday than by downing [...]

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Ban on Passover Sacrifice Gets Groups’ Goat

The Association of Temple Organizations, refused permission to perform its annual Passover sacrifice reenactment by the Jerusalem Veterinary Services, has submitted a legal petition to the Jerusalem District Court requesting that it instruct the Veterinary Services to issue the permit. The association says it has slaughtered a lamb each year since 2008 as an educational [...]

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Pope Francis Lauded for Interfaith Dialogue

The election of Pope Francis has thrilled Jewish leaders in Argentina, who predict that their friend will continue to foster warm relations and open dialogue between Catholicism and other faiths during his pontificate. They’ve seen it firsthand as recently as December, when then-Buenos Aires Archbishop Jorge Mario Bergoglio lit the first candle on the menorah [...]

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Temple-Times Passover Sacrifice Nixed by Government

Israel’s Veterinary Services will not authorize the planned public ritual sacrifice of a goat in honor of Passover this year, Veterinary Services representative Zohar Dvorkin said Thursday. Jewish groups dedicated to the Temple Mount and Temple renewal are planning the sacrifice as a reminder of what Passover looked like in Temple times. The ritual slaughter [...]

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Is Lena Dunham Jewish?

Yes, Lena Dunham is a Jew. She is creator and star of the controversial hit HBO series Girls, which “we hear” is edgy and entertaining. Wikipedia reports, “Dunham’s father is Protestant, and according to Dunham, a Mayflower descendant; Dunham’s mother is Jewish.” Dunham told the Jewish Journal: “I went to Hebrew school for, like, two [...]

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Purim and the Oscars

Purim and the Oscars

Yesterday was another fun Purim holiday celebration, but I didn’t post a Purim satire this year (last year’s edition). I also usually post a list of my favorite Purim YouTube videos before the holiday, but there really weren’t ten quality videos I could find to make my Top Ten Purim Videos list. A few standouts [...]

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NY, Israeli Leaders Pay Tribute to Top Jewish Activists

Young Israel of Jamaica Estates celebrated some of America’s top Jewish activists during its 34th Annual Gala on Sunday night. The gala, which was held at the Sephardic Temple of Cedarhurst, was a veritable who’s who of Jewish leaders from near and far. Among the former were New York State Assembly Members Dov Hikind and [...]

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Thousands Gather to Bid Farewell to Former Jewish N.Y. Mayor Ed Koch

At the funeral service for Ed Koch Monday morning at Manhattan’s Temple Emanu-El, mourners heard from former President Bill Clinton, as well as the Israeli consul general and current New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Mayor Bloomberg said that Ed Koch was the embodiment of a New Yorker. “No mayor, I think, has ever embodied the [...]

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‘Shema Yisrael’ to be Engraved on Koch’s Gravestone

Former New York Mayor Ed Koch’s memorial stone will include a Magen David (Jewish Star) and the first portion of the Shema Yisrael prayer. A report in Ha’aretz Sunday said that Koch had made the request in his will. In addition, Koch’s stone will feature the last words of Jewish journalist Daniel Perl, who was [...]

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Major Judaica Collection Auctioned in NY

Philanthropist and former Wall Street money manager Michael Steinhardt began collecting objects of Jewish history and culture three decades ago, eventually amassing a collection of manuscripts, textiles and art worth millions of dollars. Now, the 72-year-old wants to sell his more than 500-piece collection so others can enjoy it. Sotheby’s will auction the collection in [...]

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Temple Laver Moved to New Home

The Temple Institute moved a giant copper laver, or wash basin, to the new home of its exhibit of Temple articles on Monday. A statement by the Temple Institute said the basin, which is 2.5 meters (8.2 feet) tall and 2.8 meters (9.1 foot) in diameter is kosher for use in the Third Temple and [...]

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AllJewishLinks.com Newsletter Issue # 61 - January 03, 2013

The Simon Wiesenthal Center issued a travel advisory for Denmark last week in wake of warnings by Israel’s ambassador advising Jews and Israelis to refrain from wearing kippot, religious symbols, and speaking Hebrew on the streets of Copenhagen. It is intolerable that any Jew should have to hide his or her identity on the streets [...]

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The Times v. the Orthodox Male Control Over the Non-Sacred Space at the Western Wall

The Times is helping to stir up anti-Orthodox political sentiment in Israel by focusing in a report on the denial of rights to women at the Western Wall. Talmudic Analysis In fact the area of prayer at the Wall is not a holy site in formal Judaism. It is outside the location of the ancient [...]

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Rare Find of Temple Era Artifacts near Jerusalem

The discovery, like may others, was made during road excavation, this time at a new section of the Tel Aviv-Jerusalem Highway, known as Highway 1. The archaeological site is known as Tel Motza, at the Motza turnoff less than five miles west of Jerusalem. A ritual building and a cache of sacred vessels date back [...]

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Police Charge Man in Bomb Hoax Against LA Synagogue

Police have arrested a man they believe made multiple phony bomb threats against a Los Angeles synagogue on Tuesday. The suspect was identified as Wan Ryung Song, who is also known as Patrick Song, a 46-year-old naturalized citizen and native of South Korea, The Los Angeles Times reported. Song has been charged with four counts of [...]

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Suburban Synagogue Celebrates Building Renovation

Hanukkah celebrates the restoration of the Temple in Jerusalem, so it was only fitting that the Chabad and F.R.E.E. of Niles synagogue celebrated its renovation Sunday during the last day of the holiday. For a quarter of a century, the address at 9401 Margail Ave., in an unincorporated area of Cook County near Des Plaines, [...]

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