Baltimore Families Reconnect to N.J. Shul Effort to revitalize Torahs leads man on a sacred journey

These atzei chaim, Torah rollers, were dedicated to Samuel Kossman, who has a grandson in Baltimore. (Provided)

On some Shabbats, Fair Lawn, N.J., resident Jerry Schranz goes on a three-mile walk to Paterson, which was once a very Jewish area. There, he and  a few others hold a minyan in the basement of  independent-living facility Federation Apartments. With the two Torahs that belong to the synagogue — known as the Paterson Shul… Read More

Community Calendar Conundrum HoCo Jewish community fights to keep schools closed on High Holy Days

President of the Howard County Board of Rabbis, Rabbi Susan Grossman, testifies at the board of education meeting. (Marc Shapiro)

Members of the Howard County Jewish community were out in force at a board of education meeting that addressed a possible change in the public school system’s calendar on Dec. 17. The change, concerning whether or not schools should remain open on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, presented two options. One maintains the current calendar,… Read More

A Call for Reform In wake of Freddie Gray mistrial, Jewish community, activists call for systemic change


After the mistrial of  Officer William Porter, the first of six officers facing charges in connection with the death of Freddie Gray, protesters hit the streets for what they saw as an injustice. But many in Baltimore’s Jewish community say Porter’s complex trial further highlighted the need for police reform and a change in police… Read More

Repairing a Broken System Jews United for Justice begins fight to ease life for renters in Baltimore

Members of Jews United for Justice demostrate near City Hall in Baltimore as part of an effort to improve conditions for tenants going to rent court.

Baltimore’s chapter of Jews United for Justice has embarked on a new campaign aimed at removing obstacles tenants often face when going to rent court. The project, known as the 7,000 Families Campaign, comes in response to a report released this month by the Public Justice Center, which states that 7,000 is the number of… Read More

Ex-peace negotiator says … Israel must ‘shape reality’

Udi Dekel brought his ideas for peace to Temple Micah in Washington.

To remain a Jewish and democratic state, Israel must separate itself from the Palestinians now, a former Israeli peace negotiator told a Washington audience last week. Retired Brig. Gen. Udi Dekel struck a note of urgency, saying Israel cannot afford to wait for the outcome of a future round of negotiations because the status quo… Read More

District 11 Team Endorses Van Hollen for Senate


Maryland’s District 11 team of State Sen. Bobby Zirkin and State Dels. Shelly Hettleman, Dan Morhaim and Dana Stein announced its endorsement of Congressman Chris Van Hollen for U.S. Senate. Van Hollen, a Montgomery County Democrat, faces Congresswoman Donna Edwards of Prince George’s County in the Democratic primary race to replace U.S. Sen. Barbara Mikulski,… Read More

Baltimore Jewish Council Names Howard Libit New Executive Director Libit to take position in May

Howard Libit

The Baltimore Jewish Council named Howard Libit its next executive director on Thursday. Libit is currently the treasurer of the BJC and the public affairs chief and director of strategic planning and policy at the office of Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. The BJC voted unanimously for Libit to succeed executive director Art Abramson at a board… Read More

‘Scandalous’ Climate activists welcome deal but rap Israel for ‘minimalist’ commitments

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, right, joins his French 
counterpart, Manuel Valls, at the United Nations Climate Change 
Conference in Le Bourget, France.

TEL AVIV — During last week’s climate summit outside Paris, the 195 delegate countries — including Israel — committed to implementing plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improving their goals every five years. The aim: Keep Earth from warming more than 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit by the end of the 21st century. “This demands international… Read More

‘There’s an Urgency’ Former Maryland attorney general to lead Pennsylvania’s ‘porngate’ investigation

Former Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler

A Washington, D.C. law firm has been officially contracted to pore over thousands of emails on Pennsylvania state servers as part of an independent investigation into a scandal locally dubbed as “porngate.” The final signature needed on the contract between the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General and BuckleySandler LLP was added on Dec. 10, and… Read More

A Chanukah of Chizuk Proportions

Rabbis Ronald Shulman (left) of Chizuk Amuno Congregation and Steven Schwartz of Beth El Congregation light the third candle during their joint Chanukah celebration. (photo by Justin Katz)

Anyone who has been to Chizuk Amuno Congregation knows that there are only two options for parties in Krieger Auditorium: go big — or go even bigger — and that’s what congregants, alongside friends from Beth El Congregation, did during its recent Chanukah celebration that attracted hundreds of attendees. Despite the room being large enough… Read More