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Updated: 39 min 32 sec ago

Sim Shalom Online Synagogue Hosts Live Jazzed Up High Holiday Services...

39 min 32 sec ago

The Sim Shalom Online Synagogue continues to layer deep tradition with musical virtuosity, and this year will hold its Jazz High Holiday Services at Zeb’s Sound and Light in Chelsea.

(PRWeb July 24, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11926117.htm

Leonard Bernstein sculpture unveiled at Tanglewood

8 hours 26 min ago

LENOX, MASS. (JTA) – A bronze sculpture of Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990), one of the last century’s towering musical figures, was unveiled last week at Tanglewood, the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra (BSO).

The sculpture, by artist Penelope Jencks, is the second in a series planned depicting Tanglewood’s most iconic music figures, according to a statement issued by by the BSO. The first sculpture, also by Jencks, is of Aaron Copland, Bernstein’s teacher and mentor, who in 1940 recommended the young Bernstein for Serge Koussevitzky’s conducting class at Tanglewood.

Over the next 50 years, Bernstein, who went on to lead the New York Philharmonic, and later conducted around the world, frequently in Israel, became a highly-anticipated presence at the renowned music center, known for its pastoral scenery.

“Tanglewood has always been, and will continue to be, the spiritual home of Leonard Bernstein,” said composer and Academy Award winner John Williams, whose donation to the BSO is funding the sculpture series. A courtyard at the music center is named after Bernstein.

The themes of many of Bernstein’s scores, including his Kaddish Symphony and Chichester Psalms, reflected his Jewish roots. The son of Ukrainian Jewish immigrant parents, Bernstein wrote of the early musical influence of Solomon Braslavsky, the European-born and trained vocal director and organist at Boston’s Congregation Mishkan Tefila, the family’s synagogue.

Bernstein, who taught at Brandeis University from 1951 through 1956, launched the school’s Festival of Creative Arts in 1951 and served on the university’s Board of Trustees from 1976 to 81. He performed frequently in Israel, notably during the country’s founding years and during the 1967 Six-Day War. At age 70, Bernstein was named conductor laureate of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.

Bernstein was also a prolific composer for Broadway, with the musical “West Side Story” his most famous Broadway show.

Eric Cantor Quits Early After Primary Loss

9 hours 36 min ago

U.S. Representative Eric Cantor said on Friday he will resign his seat effective Aug. 18, months earlier than expected following a stunning defeat in a Republican primary election.

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Indian Shul Wins Protection From Loan Sharks

11 hours 16 min ago

Officials sought protection for a historic synagogue in the city of Cochin in western India and a nearby Jewish cemetery following the synagogue’s partial demolition.

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Will Rabbi David Saperstein’s Departure Mean Watershed Change at the RAC?

14 hours 21 min ago

Rabbi David Saperstein is leaving the Religious Action Center to become America’s ambassador for international religious freedom. Can anyone fill his shoes?

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'Jews Who Rock' Only Scratches Surface of Fame and Faith

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 06:00

‘Jews Who Rock’ is a new exhibit that takes a one-size-fits all approach to musicians who are members of the tribe. Too bad it barely scratches the surface of their relationships to Judaism.

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Palestinian Teen Charged in Firebombing of German Shul

Tue, 07/29/2014 - 15:54

A suspect has been arrested in an attempted arson attack on a German synagogue.

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8 Reasons Menachem Creditor Is Wrong To Be 'Done Apologizing' for Israel

Tue, 07/29/2014 - 08:08

Rabbi Menachem Creditor says he’s done apologizing for Israel. Jay Michaelson gives 8 reasons why it’s important to tell the truth about the Gaza war — even if it hurts.

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Planning for Third Temple With Help From Web

Tue, 07/29/2014 - 07:43

 An organization based in Jerusalem is working on a detailed architectural blueprint for the Third Jewish Temple on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount — and has turned to the internet for help with the controversial project.

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How Much Should Non-Members Pay for A Plot in Synagogue Cemetery?

Tue, 07/29/2014 - 06:00

Is $4,000 too much to ask for a non-member to be buried in a synagogue cemetery? One family’s dilemma raises questions about compassion —  and the economics of the modern shul.

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Rabbi David Saperstein Named U.S. Religious Freedom Envoy

Mon, 07/28/2014 - 14:57

Rabbi David Saperstein will be named the next ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, the first non-Christian to hold the job since it was created in 1998.

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Miami Beach Shul Hit With 'Hamas' Graffiti

Mon, 07/28/2014 - 14:39

A synagogue in North Miami Beach was vandalized with spray painted swastikas and the word “Hamas.”

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Synagogue, cars in North Miami vandalized with ‘Hamas’

Mon, 07/28/2014 - 12:02

(JTA) — A synagogue in North Miami Beach was vandalized with spray painted swastikas and the word “Hamas.”

The attack on Congregation Torah V’Emunah reportedly came early Monday morning, according to local reports.

The epithets were discovered slightly more than a day after cars owned by a Jewish family in Miami Beach were egged and smeared with cream cheese while the family attended Shabbat services at their local synagogue.

The vandals wrote “Jew” and “Hamas” on the back of the cars, parked in front of their home in a predominantly Jewish neighborhood of Miami Beach, according to the local CBS affiliate.

The family whose cars were attacked immigrated to the United States from Iran 25 years ago.

“Everyone was shocked,” said daughter Rachel Shakib.  “No one knew what was going on, we’re like this is America, this is Miami. Why would we be targeted here? We’re supposed to be safe, free from anti-Semitism.

 

Rabbi's Sex Abuse Talk to 9-Year-Old Girls Sends Savannah Into Turmoil

Mon, 07/28/2014 - 06:00

A Savannah rabbi made a serious lapse in judgment when he darkened the lights in a classroom of 9-year-old children and proceeded to talk to them about child sexual abuse. Now, the community is divided.

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Extremist Settlers Clash With Rabbis Over Palestinian Olive Groves on West Bank

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 18:39

Jewish settlers clashed with activists of the Rabbis for Human Rights movement near the West Bank city of Hebron on Friday as they protected Palestinians beginning the annual olive harvest.

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Carrie Newcomer

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 12:02

Singer-songwriter Carrie Newcomer’s music is rooted in her Quaker faith, and it often emphasizes the sacred in the ordinary. “Some of my best language has come out of the silence” of Quaker meetings, she says, “when I’ve taken the time to listen to something beyond myself.” Her songs as well as her social activism try to fulfill the old Quaker saying to “let your life speak.”

The post Carrie Newcomer appeared first on Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly.

First Woman Rabbi Recalled at Terezin Camp

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 06:30

A memorial plaque to Regina Jonas, the first female rabbi, was unveiled at the former Nazi concentration camp Terezin in the Czech Republic.

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Shalom, Cooperstown! Jewish Mayor Welcomes World to Baseball Hall of Fame

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 06:00

Cooperstown Mayor Jeff Katz and Jeff Idelson, director of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, work together to oversee induction weekend.

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Almost 80 years after ordination, the first woman rabbi finally gets her due

Thu, 07/24/2014 - 22:47

Rabbis Jacqueline Tabick, Amy Eilberg, Sandy Eisenberg Sasso and Sally Priesand stand with a photo of Rabbi Regina Jonas at Centrum Judaicum Archive in Berlin, July 22, 2014. (Toby Axelrod)

 

Ask most Jews where and when the world’s first female rabbi was ordained, and they’ll likely guess 1970s America.

But they’d be off by four decades and a continent.

The first woman rabbi was not Sally Priesand, ordained by the Reform movement in 1972, but Regina Jonas, who earned the title in 1935 in Berlin.

This week, Priesand — along with other pioneering women rabbis from various movements and countries — is in Berlin and Prague trying to bring some belated recognition to Jonas, who perished in Auschwitz in 1944.

Highlights of their five-day tour, organized by the Jewish Women’s Archive and the Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives to honor Jonas, included installing a plaque in Jonas’ memory at the Terezin concentration camp, where she was initially deported, and visiting Centrum Judaicum Archive, where Jonas’ personal papers were stored for safekeeping on the eve of her deportation.

“They came out with this little box,” said Priesand, who said she had been expecting a much bigger trove. “Her whole life was in this little box. And it reminded me of how important it is to tell the story. I wonder how many other stories were there” and never told.

Born in 1902 in Berlin, Jonas studied at the city’s Liberal Hochschule fur die Wissenschaft des Judentums (Higher Institute for Jewish Studies) and was ordained by Rabbi Max Dienmann. Leo Baeck also signed the ordination papers.

But after her death, she was largely forgotten until after the fall of the Berlin Wall, when her papers were rediscovered.

In a Tuesday evening program honoring Jonas, the rabbis discussed the challenges facing female rabbis today and shared stories about inspiration and obstacles.

Panelists included Amy Eilberg, who in 1985 became the first woman ordained by the Conservative movement; Sandy Eisenberg Sasso, who became the first woman Reconstructionist rabbi in 1974; Jaqueline Tabick, who in 1975 became the first female rabbi ordained in the United Kingdom and today is convener of the Rabbinic Court of the British Reform movement; and Alina Treiger, who in 2010 became the second woman rabbi ordained in Germany.

The program’s one Orthodox woman rabbi — Sara Hurwitz, who was ordained with the title of rabba in 2009 by Rabbis Avi Weiss and Daniel Sperber — was unable to reach Berlin due to the temporary closure of Ben Gurion Airport.

“Although [Regina Jonas'] voice was silenced,” said Hurwitz, speaking to the group via cell phone, “it is thanks to her courage [that] we are guaranteeing that [Jewish learning for women] not only survives but also thrives.”

Treiger noted that while Jonas had to do her studying at home, she herself was able to study alongside male rabbinical students at the Abraham Geiger College at the University of Potsdam.

“It was my motto: If she can do it, I will do it also,” she said.

 

Extremist Rabbi Issues Ruling Saying Jewish Law Permits Destruction of Gaza

Thu, 07/24/2014 - 19:11

Rabbi Dov Lior, a leading West Bank rabbi who endorsed a book justifying the killing of non-Jews, issued a religious ruling saying that Jewish law permits the destruction of Gaza to keep southern Israel safe.

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