Posted on

Wearing Many Hats: The Balancing Act of Today’s Rebbetzin

Guest Post by Rebbetzin Yocheved Goldberg Recently, when I mentioned to someone that I was attending this year’s annual Rebbetzin Conference hosted by Yeshiva University, she mockingly asked, “What do you do there, exchange potato kugel recipes?” Historically, a Rebbetzin had no particular role and there were no real expectations of her.  She gained herRead More...

Posted on

You Don’t Know Who is At the Table

So Always Measure Your Words Carefully What if you knew the person or people you were talking to desperately wanted to have a child or would give anything to have another child, but were struggling to make it happen?  Wouldn’t you measure your words more carefully? Wouldn’t you navigate conversations topics more thoughtfully? Wouldn’t youRead More...

Posted on

The Heart of Orthodoxy is Healthy and Strong: Seeing the Opportunities Within Every Difficulty

“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” Winston Churchill Lately, I have been thinking about this quote. There are significant and real “difficulties” all around us, as Jews and as Americans.  Within our Orthodox community, we continue to confront scandals that should cause us to reassessRead More...

Posted on

Vigilance, Not Vigils: Responding to the Tragedy in Poway

The following is adapted from my remarks delivered on April 30 at the Boca Raton community gathering of prayer and unity in solidarity with the Chabad community of Poway, California I want to thank Rabbi Bukiet and Chabad of West Boca for hosting tonight’s event.  Tonight, we are all members of Chabad.  I can’t tellRead More...

Posted on

Someone We Don’t Know Needs Our Help; Can She Count on You?

(This article has been updated to remove the husband’s name as shortly after our rally, due to several efforts, the husband finally gave a get) There’s a woman whom I have never met, and you have most likely never met, who desperately needs our help.  Jill has been civilly divorced since October of 2009, butRead More...

Posted on

What Will You Answer About What You Did to Confront Anti-Semitism?

This Sermon was delivered at Boca Raton Synagogue on Shabbos, March 16, 2019 Last time I checked, Tel Aviv is not disputed territory in anyone’s book.  It isn’t a “settlement,” “occupied” or an “obstacle to peace.”  When rockets are launched at Tel Aviv, whether someone pushed the button on purpose or by accident, they areRead More...

Don't Just Dress Up As Mordechai, Be An Ish Yehudi Like Mordechai

Posted on

Are We Playing God? Leadership, Vaccination and a Communal Policy

The ultimate measure of a leader is not where he or she stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he or she stands in times of challenge and controversy, when decisions bring about uncomfortable consequences. In a recent post titled “Vaccines and Jewish Leadership Hypocrisy,” a colleague and friend of ours challenges aRead More...

Co-authored with Rabbi David Shabtai, MD

Posted on

You Won’t Believe What This Man Did for His Competitor

In January, a fire destroyed the building that housed Yossi Heiman’s Fish Market in Borough Park, Brooklyn, leaving him with no place to operate his business and no ability to draw income. Shea Langsam owns a similar store, Fish to Dish, just a few blocks away.  One would have thought that as sympathetic as heRead More...

Paying More Than Lip-service to Living With Faith

Posted on

It is Time for Outrage, Not Silence!

Adapted from a Sermon delivered at Boca Raton Synagogue January 19, 2019 – Shabbos Parshas Beshalach Martin Luther King, Jr., whose birthday we will mark this Monday, spoke powerfully about the danger and potential damage of silence.  He once said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”  OnRead More...

Where are Our Friends Protesting Anti-Semitism?

Posted on

An Open Letter to Those Coming to Florida for Yeshiva Week and to My Fellow Floridians…

This week marks the much-anticipated and highly-celebrated time on the Jewish calendar – Yeshiva Week, when many Jewish day schools and yeshivos give vacation and it feels like a significant percentage of the Jewish world goes on pilgrimage to Florida.  There are many beautiful aspects to welcoming so many fellow Jews to our community.  ForRead More...

Posted on

What Brings a Reform and Orthodox Synagogue Together? Giving Israeli Combat Veterans Some Peace of Mind

As American Jews or Jewish Americans, even if we don’t formally have dual citizenship, we unapologetically feel loyalty, appreciation and devotion to both America and Israel.  But make no mistake, the freedoms we enjoy, both in America and Israel, don’t come without a cost. It is no secret that America and Israel have enemies, adversariesRead More...

Posted on

Kavana and/or Convenience, Can You Have Both? A Measured Appeal to Those Who Attend Neighborhood Minyanim Instead of Shul

In recent years, there has been a proliferation of neighborhood minyanim that serve as alternatives to attending Shul.  Some of these minyanim rotate between homes, while others are in fixed locations.  Some meet only Friday nights while others also meet for Mincha and Maariv on Shabbos/Motzei Shabbos as well.  All were started for convenience: forRead More...

Posted on

Being Single Should Not Have to Mean Being Alone

Imagine not being invited for Shabbos dinner and going home from shul to eat all alone.  You eat, you read, you read some more and when you look at the clock, it’s not even 8:00 pm. For some that sounds like a dream come true, and maybe it is for one week. But what ifRead More...

Posted on

Friendship Before Philosophy: The Formula For Winning the Unity Prize

This week marked the fourth yahrzeit of Eyal, Gilad and Naftali, the three boys tragically kidnapped and murdered in the summer of 2014.  Their disappearance and subsequent deaths united our people, not only in Israel, but around the world.  Jews in communities across the globe felt connected, bound by a shared history and destiny. ForRead More...

Posted on

A New Study Shows That American Jewry is Disappearing. Patrilineal Descent and Intermarriage are the Problem, Not the Solution

The startling findings of a recent Jewish People Policy Institute study drew an Ha’aretz headline of “Low Marriage Rates and Intermarriage Threaten Future of U.S. Jewry” and an Arutz Sheva’s headline asking, “Is there a future for non-Orthodox American Jewry?” The study found that outside of Orthodoxy, fewer Jews are getting married, those marrying areRead More...

Posted on

When You Dip the Karpas, Think of AIPAC and What We Could Accomplish With Our Many Voices if We Had One Mission

Last March, I tore my Achilles tendon and needed surgery.  The tear, surgery, and rehab were uncomfortable, but having to miss the annual AIPAC Policy Conference in Washington was painful.  I lay in bed on painkillers, security pass and credentials around my neck, watching the conference live on my laptop.  Not only did I missRead More...

Posted on

When the Bullies Go Low, BRS Goes High: A Sad Update on Matthew Kelly and Boca Raton Synagogue

At so many points during this past month, I have not known whether to laugh or cry.  As I was assaulted with emails, texts, voicemails, social media campaigns, and numerous videos spewing outrageous and hateful lies, I laughed out loud because of the ridiculousness, preposterousness, and absurdity of what was being said.  When I readRead More...

Posted on

Victimized by Fake News: Setting the Record Straight on Matthew Kelly Speaking at BRS

Fake news doesn’t distinguish between parties or victims.  At the end of his term, former President Obama bemoaned the explosion of fake news and current President Trump has referenced the phrase often since entering office.  This month, lawmakers introduced two bills that would legislate schools to teach students how to distinguish fake news from theRead More...

Posted on

We Cannot Control Enemies from Without But We Can Stop Being Our Own Worst Enemies From Within: A Call for a Kiddush Hashem Campaign

What was supposed to be a Chanukah week of joy and happiness has in fact been challenging and difficult.  On the very holiday celebrating our liberation from the Syrian Greeks occupying our most sacred space, Har HaBayis, the Temple Mount, the UN Security Council passed a resolution declaring that we are in fact illegally occupyingRead More...

Posted on

Has Chabad Quietly Revolutionized the Role of Rebbetzin?

With 5,600 rabbis serving in over 90 countries one would have thought that Chabad had the entire United States covered, yet they only placed a rabbi in the 50th state last week. South Dakota may only be home to about 400 Jews, but that isn’t stopping Rabbi Mendel and Mussie Alperowitz from buying one-way tickets,Read More...

Posted on

You May Think it is Not Your Problem – Here is Why You are Wrong

For some time, the cost of Jewish education has been labeled a crisis.  While it feels like this issue has been addressed ad nauseam, believe it or, it is still being debated.  Our own Rabbi Adam Englander penned an article describing how KHDS was able to freeze tuition and even lower it.  Gershon Distenfeld, ChairmanRead More...

Posted on

Special Needs & Special Opportunities: Lessons I Learned From Camp HASC

  nor·mal adjective: conforming to a standard; usual, typical, or expected. The people in Camp HASC are not “normal” in that they are anything but typical or usual. HASC campers include those in their 50’s and 60’s, wheelchair-bound, individuals with feeding tubes, and with every imaginable special need including intellectual and physical disabilities. The needsRead More...

Posted on

Do You Know, Let Alone Celebrate, Your Hebrew Birthday?

Jews of diverse backgrounds, denominations and levels of observance seem to all observe yahrzeits of their loved ones based on the Hebrew calendar, not the Gregorian one. And yet, when it comes to birthdays and anniversaries, it seems few Jews—even observant ones—know, let alone commemorate, the Hebrew date of these significant milestones in their lives.Read More...

Posted on

Give Proportionally to What You Spend on Your Pesach

Since the very creation of the luxury Pesach program, rabbis have been railing against them for their excessiveness, extravagance, and the forfeiting of many of the traditions involved in preparing and experiencing Pesach. Ironically, many of those same rabbis have later “eaten their words” and accepted invitations to serve as scholars in residence, bringing theirRead More...

Posted on

What is the Measure of a Great Community?

What is the measure of a great community? What are the metrics and tools we use to evaluate the success of a society? In this week’s parsha, Mishpatim, the Torah tell us that we must not cause pain or suffering to a widow or orphan. So strict is this law, that God promises that oneRead More...

Posted on

Wear Your Yarmulke – Because You Can & Because it is Good for You

The former CEO of Timberland, Jeffrey Swartz, has made numerous contributions to both his industry in particular and the corporate world generally. In addition to focusing on profits, revenue, and the financial bottom line, Swartz was among the first to emphasize a corporation’s social responsibility and duty. In his first “Corporate Social Responsibility Report,” issuedRead More...

Posted on

Avoid These Actual Things Said to Couples Struggling with Infertility

BRS Segula Fund and Support Group The BRS Segula fund was created by Michele and Chayim Dimont with the goal of alleviating the financial burden associated with the prohibitive costs of infertility treatments. Segula offers interest-free loans to couples in our community experiencing this monetary hardship. The loans are paid back only when the familyRead More...

Posted on

Failing to Prepare is Preparing for Your Family to Fail

Death is a highly uncomfortable and awkward subject. As a result, most people do all they can to avoid the subject altogether. While we would prefer to see ourselves as living forever, the Torah instructs us that, in fact, reflecting on our mortality and being mindful of our transience are critical to living an inspiredRead More...

Posted on

Debate Fervently, But Love Fiercely

Recently, the United States Holocaust Museum asked my synagogue to host an event of theirs. So this past Wednesday night, we hosted Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic for a conversation about anti-Semitism in Europe and around the world, a topic he has researched extensively and recently written about. Growing anti-Semitism is a universal concern forRead More...

Posted on

Letter to BRS Following the Funeral of Ezra Schwartz z”l

I wrote the following letter to the BRS family after attending the send off of Ezra Schwartz H’yd at Ben Gurion Airport: Dear BRS Family, The term levaya, which we use to describe a funeral service, means to accompany. At Ben Gurion Airport tonight, hundreds gathered to accompany Ezra Schwartz Hy”d to the flight thatRead More...

Posted on

The Hanukkah Tree Topper and the Jewish Future

Two years ago, due to a very rare intersection of the Jewish and Gregorian calendars, Thanksgiving coincided with the first day of Chanukah resulting in a day that was popularly referred to as Thanksgivukkah. This week, similar to last year, a different overlap which occurs much more often will take place as Halloween falls onRead More...

Posted on

Thinking of Those Not Under the Tallis this Kol Ha’Nearim

The previous Guinness World Record for the longest hug had stood at 24 hours and 33 minutes. This past week, two Iowa State University students shattered that record and maintained a hug for 31 straight hours. When asked what motivated them they explained, “There wasn’t really anything that inspired us; we were just kind ofRead More...

Posted on

Rabbis & Plumbers: Is the Iran Deal Just Politics?

The Jewish community is undeniably split regarding the highly controversial Iran deal. Sadly, rather than focusing on advocating the merits or demerits of the deal, too many on both sides of the issue have resorted to ad-hominem attacks, name calling, questioning of motives and dismissing the positions of others as just politics. This week’s TorahRead More...

Posted on

A Risk Free Investment Opportunity

I have an investment opportunity for you with a guaranteed return. It will yield dividends for years to come and has absolutely no risk. Are you interested? Someone once asked Baron Edmond de Rothschild about his net worth.  He turned to his personal assistant to come up with a calculation.  The assistant returned with aRead More...

Posted on

A Miraculous Bar Mitzvah You Don’t Want to Miss

Five years ago, I was in a store when an eight-year-old boy from our community saw me, came over, and said one word: “Rabbi.” The encounter not seeming all that unusual, I didn’t think anything of it until later that evening when the boy’s mother texted me to say that I had witnessed a miracle.Read More...

Posted on

See Yourself as a Cast Member of the Happiest Place on Earth

Disney World’s slogan is “The Happiest Place on Earth.”  Perhaps the greatest part about the Magic of Disney is not the souvenirs, the rides, the characters, or even the memories. To me, the most magical part of Disney is simply how nice everyone is to one another and how happy everyone seems. It is hardRead More...

Posted on

Turn Your Shabbos Table into an Informal Classroom

Each week I look forward to the coming Shabbos and the opportunity to enjoy a beautiful meal filled with my wife’s delicious delicacies and surrounded by my family and usually lots of guests. When else in this hectic world of obligations and distractions do we sit for hours on end completely disconnected from technology andRead More...

Posted on

Prejudice Enslaves; Confronting it Liberates

The holiday of Pesach in general and the Seder in particular are not just about recounting a seminal event in Jewish history. Each year, Pesach is a time designated to focus on that which enslaves us and holds us in bondage today and to seek in our own lives the freedom and liberty that ourRead More...

Posted on

The Question We Desperately Need an Answer To

“Intermarriage is a fact of life and we should be more welcoming when it happens.” That was part of the reaction of the chief executive officer of The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism to a recent controversial decision made by the leadership of the youth wing of the movement, United Synagogue Youth. At the annualRead More...

Posted on

Persuade, Don’t Preach

Earlier, this week, Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks addressed an assembly of the high schools of our community. He was introduced beautifully by ninth grader Jonah Tripp who said, “To me, Rabbi Sacks is known as a permanent fixture in my home. His books line our shelves and our family so often quotes him at ourRead More...

Posted on

Infertility Etiquette

Many of our young men and women of marriageable age assume that when a couple decides it is time to start a family, it is simple to conceive and bring a healthy baby into the world. In fairness, they have good reason for making that assumption. Growing up they often hear “mazel tov”s and seeRead More...

Posted on

Is Challahween the Sequel to Thanksgivukkah or Totally Different?

Last year, due to a very rare intersection of the Jewish and Gregorian calendars, Thanksgiving coincided with the first day of Chanukah resulting in a day that was popularly referred to as Thanksgivukkah. This week a different overlap which occurs much more often will take place as Halloween falls on Friday Night. While Thanksgivukkah wasRead More...

Posted on

Responding to Scandal With Nuance

Shocked, devastated, pained, violated, outraged, and anxious are just some of the understandable reactions to the despicable scandal that broke last week.  As has been pointed out, the mikvah is the most sacred space in a community: a place of purity, vulnerability, and exposure.  If the allegations are true, the conduct of the rabbi whoRead More...

Posted on

The Incredible Story of BRS’s New 600-Year-Old Torah

  This past Sunday of Chol HaMoed, owing to the great generosity of the Kohlhagen family, our Boca Raton Synagogue community had the distinct honor of welcoming two Sifrei Torah into our collection. While all Torah scrolls are sacred and worthy of our love and affection, the extraordinary story of one of these Sifrei TorahRead More...

Posted on

Throwing Our Esrogim at the Shabbos App

It is fifteen years later and I still vividly remember how offended and insulted I felt. In my second year studying at YU’s Gruss Kollel in Israel, I joined a separate program twice a week that focused on training outreach professionals. I was the one YU guy among an otherwise homogenous group of “Yeshivish” youngRead More...

Posted on

How to Pay a Proper Shiva Call

  “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven…a time to keep silent and a time to speak.” The wisdom in this song is not for the Byrds, it comes from the wisest of all men, King Shlomo. While the picture of many shiva homes today filledRead More...

Posted on

What the $13 Billion Mystery Angels Can Teach Us…

I was recently having a conversation with someone I know that is an active member of a mega-Church with tens of thousands of members and multiple satellite locations. Curious about how they support the tremendous infrastructure, I asked him how much dues cost. He responded that there are no dues because the Church budget isRead More...

Posted on

Honor Our Survivors By Simply Showing Up

How many people do you know who fast on the 20th of Sivan?  The likely answer is zero.  It is not one of the minor fast days, and obviously not Tisha B’av or Yom Kippur, so why would we fast? Twice in our history, the 20th of Sivan was designated as a permanent fast dayRead More...

Posted on

The Exodus and Immigration

The debate about immigration reform heated up again this week with the President and Republican leadership publicly sparring over who is to blame for a lack of progress in an area that all agree is critically important to the future of our country. Immigration is as controversial and emotionally driven a topic as any, withRead More...

Posted on

Ask What’s Working, Not What’s Broken

Last week, I had the privilege of joining 30 lay and professional leaders from South Florida on the Jewish Leadership Coalition’s 2nd annual mission to Tallahassee. Florida law allows corporations to receive a dollar for dollar tax credit when they donate funds to the Step Up For Students scholarship program, which provides scholarships to childrenRead More...

Posted on

Being Selective When Lending our Microphone

Rashid Khalidi, the Edward Said Professor of Modern Arab Studies at Columbia University, is well-known for his anti-Israel and anti-Zionist positions.  He has characterized Israel as a “racist” state and described it as “basically an apartheid system in creation.” In an article in the Chicago Tribune, he wrote, “Israel is a state that has a powerful army withRead More...

Posted on

Facebook and Football, Do Rabbis and Shuls Belong?

Just a few weeks ago, at an “Ask the Rabbi” class, one of our members posed the following question to me: “Rabbi, I notice you are active on social media, including Facebook and Twitter.  What is your thinking?  What are you trying to accomplish?”  Even more recently, in response to the promotion of our BRSRead More...

Posted on

Response to the Open Letter from Josh Stadlan

Dear Josh, I appreciate your response to my recent column and enjoy the opportunity to engage in lively discourse about a topic that is clearly close to your heart.  The passion with which you wrote and the articulateness you bring to your arguments are a testament, I believe, to your family, our Boca schools, andRead More...

Posted on

Avoiding The Appearance of Religious Hubris

A prominent Modern Orthodox high school announced this week that girls who want to wear tefillin during davening at school would be permitted to do so.  Not to be outdone, a second school quickly proclaimed that they, too, would allow it.  News spread like wildfire and the headlines quickly went from, “Modern Orthodox Girls FightRead More...

Posted on

It’s None of Our Business

According to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, approximately 800,000 children younger than 18 are reported missing each year.  That means close to 2,200 children a day or 91 children every hour are reported missing in the United States.  And yet, I don’t remember a story catching the attention of the Jewish communityRead More...

Posted on

Simplifying Shabbos Meals

I recently spent a couple of days at Disneyworld with my sister and brother and their families, who were visiting from Israel.  As we walked through the parks, a few of my nephews and nieces independently shared the same observation: “Why are people in America so fat?”  While their comment may not be politically correctRead More...

Posted on

History or Memory? Knowing Our Story

How do you say the word history in Biblical hebrew? What word does the Torah use for history? It doesn’t, and there is none. We have a word in modern Hebrew – historia, but there is no Biblical word for history. Instead, the word the Torah uses is zecher – memory. The pasuk in Ha’azinuRead More...

Posted on

Should We Judge Judaism By the Jews?

This week brought the latest in the string of scandals among so-called Orthodox Rabbis.  The former Chief Rabbi of the State of Israel was arrested for committing fraud, bribery, money laundering, breach of trust, witness tampering, and obstruction of justice.  A few days later, a Chassidic Rebbe from Yerushalayim was arrested in New York forRead More...

Posted on

Quieting the Noise in our Lives to Find what Really Matters: My Reflections from the Rebbitzen’s Yarchei Kallah

Guest Post: Rebbetzin Yocheved Goldberg “Quieting the Noise in our Lives to Find what Really Matters: My Reflections from the Rebbitzen’s Yarchei Kallah” This past week I attended the annual Yeshiva University Yarchei Kallah conference for Rebbetzins.  Each year, I cherish the opportunity to gather with women from around the United States and beyond, and workRead More...

Posted on

Roll Calls and Life’s Calling

For most of our history, the expression “roll call” did not have positive connotations for the Jewish people.  Daily roll call during the Holocaust, for example, meant standing still, possibly for hours, and wearing a thin uniform, often in freezing conditions.   Today, there are two annual roll calls that I try to listen to andRead More...

Posted on

Kosher Competition

Can a community ever have too many Kosher restaurants?  Is there a point in which the market is saturated and the addition of another establishment will hurt the viability of the existing ones?  Should the local Kosher supervising agency legislate issues of competition, or should they allow a free market in which the consumer determinesRead More...

Posted on

The BRS Civility Statement – Why Now? Why Ever?

(Adapted from a Derasha delivered on Parshas Vayeira 5774) A little over a month ago, BRS emailed our members our newly adopted Civility Statement that reads as follows: In the spirit of our mission “Valuing Diversity and Celebrating Unity,” we believe that a community is built on the collective engagement of individuals representing differing perspectives,Read More...

Posted on

Being the Antidote

In an attempt at humor, a Jewish parody blog ran the following headline this week: “In a rare moment of achdus (unity), Ultra-Orthodox and non-Orthodox Jews rejoiced at the news that a Modern Orthodox group had finally made a chillul Hashem (desecration of God’s name).” The author was referring to a story that made itsRead More...

Posted on

State of the Rabbinate

“So, when are the skeletons in your closet going to emerge?  When is your scandal going to break, Rabbi?”  These were the questions I was asked by a friend after a week in which three major Rabbinic scandals came to light.  Over just a few days, it was discovered that the Chief Rabbi of aRead More...

Posted on

Finding Strengths We Didn’t Know We Have

The moment Shoshie Stern’s extended family heard about her tragic passing, they dropped whatever they were doing and made their way to South Florida to be here with their family.  Grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins all descended upon the Stern home to shed a tear and lend a shoulder. Shoshie’s recent 12th birthday was certainlyRead More...

Posted on

The Foolishness of Triumphalism

Earlier this week, I was invited to speak at a Synagogue in Boynton Beach on the subject of “A Vision for Orthodoxy in the Next One Hundred Years.” I began by telling the assembled group that I wasn’t even sure what was happening next week and was certainly not so presumptuous to assume I couldRead More...

Posted on

Making Our Shuls the Happiest Places on Earth

Disney World’s slogan is “The Happiest Place on Earth,” and this week, many families enjoying their Yeshiva week vacation in one of Disney’s many parks or programs would likely agree. Perhaps the greatest part about the Magic of Disney is not the souvenirs, the rides, the characters, or even the memories. To me, the mostRead More...

Posted on

Making Good on a Promise

Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to make good on an important promise, and in so doing, to follow in the footsteps of our forefathers.   When Yaakov Avinu anticipated that he would soon leave this world, he summoned his beloved son Yosef, and asked him to make a promise: “Vayikra livno l’Yosef vayomer loRead More...

Posted on

Kindness and Goodness in the Darkest Moments

A pediatrician from the area shared a remarkable story with me this week.  In 2005, when Hurricane Wilma struck, many people and businesses lost power for an extended period of time, including this doctor.  She was unable to practice or care for her patients.  Out of nowhere, she received a call from our very ownRead More...

Posted on

A Land of Opportunity

It is not every day that you pull up to a Kosher restaurant in Boca Raton and discover two black SUV’s with tinted windows in the parking lot and Secret Service agents at the entrance. At first, I thought they were there to protect Yocheved and me on our dinner date and help us getRead More...

Posted on

Is the Siyum HaShas the Antidote to Tisha B’Av?

If unity were easy, everyone would be practicing it. If it didn’t require compromise, concession or cooperation, it wouldn’t be such a big deal to call for unity. Unity, achdus, is difficult and challenging, and practicing it can sometimes feel lonely. Our tradition states clearly that the main cause of God’s withdrawal from His BeisRead More...

Posted on

What Our Community Can Learn from the Asifa

By now, you have likely heard about the Internet Asifa, the large gathering of Orthodox Jews at Citi Field a few weeks ago to address the dangers of the Internet.  The gathering included some harsh and strict proclamations, such as it is forbidden to have Internet in the home and it is only permissible toRead More...

Posted on

Where are our Young People?

Things are rumored to slow down in South Florida after Pesach, but this past week and a half it certainly didn’t feel like it. Those who attended our annual Yom Ha’Shoah program were moved deeply by the incredible story of German born Dr. Bernd Wollschlaeger. At a young age, he discovered that his father wasRead More...

Posted on

Let My People Go!

(This post has been redacted to eliminate the names of the people involved in the story below.) “Let my people go!” This refrain, introduced by Moshe in Egypt when he appealed to Pharaoh to liberate the Jewish people from bondage, has not only been referenced throughout Jewish history, but has been embraced by multiple peoplesRead More...

Posted on

What are You Doing to Heal the Divide?

Eleven Rabbis from across North America gathered in Boca this week for a day and a half of meetings, under the auspices of the Orthodox Union.  The Legacy Group, as we have affectionately been titled by OU leadership, convenes twice a year to discuss and compare what is happening in our communities, commiserate over challenges,Read More...

Posted on

Keep the Money Local

If I had a dollar for every email I received this week reminding me to recite the parshas ha’mann, as a segullah for parnassah, I would no longer need a parnassah.   You see in this week’s parsha, the Torah describes the miraculous, supernatural manna that fell each day from heaven, providing the Jewish people theirRead More...

Posted on

Opting In When Others Opt Out

I had the privilege of attending three brises this week, but only two of them were open to the public. Mazel tov to the Hilfs and Sugermans on welcoming their new sons into the covenant of Avraham Avinu. It is the third bris, though, the one which was only open to a select few, thatRead More...