Amidst the suffering and conflict occurring in too many parts of the world, the White House delivered good news and something to celebrate this week. Rabbi David Saperstein and I were privileged to be in the East Room of the White House yesterday morning to watch President Barack Obama sign an Executive Order prohibiting all companies that receive a contract from the federal government from discriminating against LGBT employees and adding gender identity to federal...Read More
Here’s a new prayer for safety of IDF soldiers during Operation Protective Edge. It’s based on a prayer called "For the IDF: Operation Pillar of Defense," which I wrote nearly two years ago for that conflict. Unlike the earlier version, this prayer specifically identifies Hamas and includes more specific prayers for the families of the dead and wounded. It also includes a prayer for peace.
For the IDF, Operation Protective Edge
We stand with the defenders of Israel. We honor the...Read More
Years ago, before I had children, I sat in a meeting with a colleague who casually mentioned that her young son was not feeling well but was in good hands with his nanny, whom she completely trusted. At the time, I marveled at how this woman could remain so calm, not rushing home to be with her sick child. I predicted that someday, when I was a parent, I would be incapable of putting on such a brave face. At the first sign of trouble, I thought, I would be there by my hypothetical child’s side, keeping him or her safe, healthy, and feeling loved.
I’ve learned a few things since...Read More
The Metropolitan Opera in New York recently made the controversial choice to produce John Adams' "The Death of Klinghoffer," an opera that deals with the murder of Jewish American Leon Klinghoffer in 1985, when terrorists threw him into the ocean during their attack on the Achille Lauro cruise ship. Facing intense criticism, the Met has...Read More
Yesterday began the three-week period leading up to Tishah B’Av (August 4-5 this year), the darkest, saddest day on the Jewish calendar. On Tishah B’Av, we fast and we mourn for the destruction of the ancient temples, as well as many other devastations throughout Jewish history.
The three weeks and the nine days right before Tishah B’Av have certain traditional guidelines and practices to prepare. As Jews, wherever we are in the world, we live our daily lives aware of possible threats. We may not need to be...Read More
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