The Pope’s Prescription for Congress

Pope Francis’ visit to Capitol Hill brought much praise and generous applause. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call/Newscom)

One of the most widely reported highlights of Pope Francis’ visit to the United States was his historic visit to Capitol Hill last Wednesday. In the first-ever address by a pope to a joint meeting of Congress, Pope Francis tackled several humanitarian subjects that he urged U.S. lawmakers to address. On immigration, he told the … Read More

Let’s Not Lose Sight of What’s Important Ki Tisa

This week, we read from the Torah portion Ki Tisa.  We read this portion during Sukkot because Sukkot is a celebratory holiday. This portion reminds us of the true meaning of the holiday, which is even more. It reminds us that there are consequences for our actions. Often on Sukkot, people are joyous and throw… Read More

Placing Our Trust in God’s Protection Divar Torah

This Shabbat, Hol Ha Moed Sukkot, we read from the Book of Ezekiel. During the holiday of Sukkot, the themes of destruction and renewal occur. The prophets associated the theme of warfare, followed by hope and redemption, with the holiday of Sukkot. They anticipated the day to come when all the nations would witness universal… Read More

Holy History or Sacred Seeds? Shabbat Sukkot

The Three Festivals we celebrate are powerful connectors of the Jewish people across time and space. Sukkot, Pesach and Shavuot each provide essential connections for us in the world of land and food. But each carries a powerful connection with God through our history as well. Most of us get the historical connection more easily…. Read More

Repression of the Sublime Parshat Ha’azinu

It was advertised as one symposium at a major psychology conference. It was to be a discussion about memory and forgetfulness. But it turned out to be one of the most intense and instructive days that I have ever witnessed. The first speaker began by insisting that the fact that we remember things is obvious…. Read More

Beth Tfiloh or Beth AIPAC?

Rabbinic huckster Shmuely Boteach — complete with his own bobblehead doll, available for purchase on his own website — self-brands as America’s rabbi. If that is the case, then localite Rabbi Mitch Wohlberg is AIPAC’s rabbi and Beth Tfiloh, the congregation which he serves, should be renamed Beth AIPAC (“Time for Action: AIPAC CEO addresses… Read More

With Zionism, Jews Need a History Lesson

Under the surface of your recent article about a Red Emma’s customer offended by the lack of Zionist books (“MICA Student Admonished for Pro-Israel Views at Coffee Shop,” Sept. 11), there are revealing insights into our community’s psychology. The incident itself seems to be more about this customer’s demand to educate unwilling coffee shop employees… Read More

Slap in the Face to NPT Nations

Saul Edelman’s comments in his Sept. 18 Your Say letter are simply ludicrous. As a grossly distorted parody of my Your Say words (“The Iran Deal: An Outrage, Insult”, Sept. 4), they are reprehensible. To set the record straight, approximately 190 nations, including Iran and the U.S., are party to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation… Read More

A Missed Opportunity for Healing

I read with interest the “Personal Statement of Apology” made by Rabbi Barry Freundel in the Sept. 11th Balitmore Jewish Times. As a social worker with 30 years of clinical experience, I had hoped the rabbi might have explained, especially to the victims and the Jewish community in which he was revered, what drove him… Read More

Nights in the Sukkah

In America, Sukkot is a meteorologically challenged holiday, and our family experienced the whole panoply of challenges. From my wife’s native Omaha, Neb., with its bitter cold October nights to my native New York’s torrential rains to the oppressively hot Miami, where we lived for six years before making aliyah in 1997, Sukkot, though characterized… Read More