Jewish Journal

Julie G Fax

  • Jewish Community Library May Merge, Move

    January 29, 2009 | 3:13 am

    Linda Sanders needed some old Yiddish music to cheer up a 98-year-old woman she visited regularly, and she knew just where to find the obscure recordings — at the Jewish Community Library of Los Angeles, in The Jewish Federation building on Wilshire Boulevard.

    Sanders has been one...

  • LimmudLA gears up for second conference

    January 8, 2009 | 5:40 pm

    Caroline Kelly spent a weekend last February in a whirlwind of Jewish texts, culture, politics, arts and community at the inaugural LimmudLA conference, a nondenominational, noninstitutional, volunteer-run festival of everything Jewish. When it was over, one thing was clear to her:...
  • The many miracles of the family menorah

    December 18, 2008 | 3:08 am

    Alex, Ryan, Josh and Ellie Dubin light about 25 menorahs every night of Chanukah

    From painted-clay preschool classics to sterling silver family heirlooms, the eight bright lights of the chanukiyah have a unique and artful way of revealing our values, holding our histories and telling...

  • Scholarships help keep middle-income kids in Jewish schools

    December 18, 2008 | 2:11 am

    Amid the cascade of bad economic news of the past few months, five Jewish high schools in Los Angeles received some good news last week.

    The Jim Joseph Foundation, based in San Francisco, awarded the Bureau of Jewish Education (BJE) and The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles a...

  • Q&A with Howard Blume: What’s next for LAUSD with Brewer gone?

    December 18, 2008 | 2:01 am

    Last week the Los Angeles Unified School District board voted to spend more than $500,000 to buy out the two remaining years on the contract of Superintendent David L. Brewer III, a retired Navy vice admiral who took over the struggling district two years ago. Brewer's supporters...
  • Obama's cousin-in-law Rabbi Capers Funnye battles to open the gates of Judaism [VIDEO]

    November 26, 2008 | 6:43 pm

    Rabbi Capers C. Funnye Jr. is a kippah-wearing black rabbi who leads a multiethnic congregation in Chicago.

    But if you happen to run into him, don't let your curiosity come across the wrong way.

    Speaking last week in Los Angeles to an interdenominational group of rabbis who perform...

  • Angeleno pushes effort on recognizing conversions

    November 26, 2008 | 6:36 pm

    When Lorin Fife converted to Judaism some 30 years ago, his experience with the Orthodox rabbis who presided over his year of study and conversion ceremony was one of warmth and acceptance.

    Rabbi Shmuel Katz, who spent decades as the head of Los Angeles' Orthodox bet din (rabbinic...

  • Rabbi Funnye reaps nachas over his cousin-in-law Barack

    November 26, 2008 | 6:29 pm


    An annual dinner several years ago at the Blue Gargoyle, a nonprofit organization at which Rabbi Capers C. Funnye Jr. was executive director. U.S. Senator Richard (Dick) Durbin, fourth from right, was the guest speaker, and State Senator Barack Obama, far left, was a guest. Photo...
  • Diller Awards recognize teens’ extraordinary efforts in tikkun olam

    November 19, 2008 | 12:34 am

    Fred Scarf had to make sure he was wearing his glasses when he saw the number attached to the Diller Teen Tikkun Olam Award: $36,000. That's a lot of money to most people, but especially to a high school senior.

    Scarf won the Diller Teen Tikkun Olam Award last spring in recognition...

  • Post-election healing — kumbaya in class and at the beach

    November 12, 2008 | 1:48 am

    Alison Weinreb, a teacher at Maimonides Academy in West Hollywood, invited her sixth-grade social studies class to her home for an election-night viewing party.

    As the electoral map turned increasingly blue, she noticed that her scattered Obama supporters were keeping pretty quiet --...

  • L.A. Orthodox rabbis want business ethics to be kosher, too

    October 16, 2008 | 1:28 am

    Seeking to accentuate Jewish traditions that place a premium on ethical integrity, Los Angeles Orthodox rabbis are encouraging local businesses to sign up for a new seal of certification that ensures employers are treating workers fairly and humanely.

    The move comes in response to...

  • Congregations help the homeless into homes—one family at a time

    October 10, 2008 | 2:56 pm

    Sharon (not her real name) and her 4 1/2-year-old son have been in and out of shelters and temporary housing for the past several years, sometimes living on the streets. A recovering drug addict, Sharon now has a steady job working at a bakery but is about to reach her time limit in...
  • Transcendence: Jacob Artson’s eloquence and spirit defy his severe autism diagnosis

    October 2, 2008 | 12:07 am

    Jacob Artson needs a break. He's expended a huge effort keeping his movements and tics under control for the past 45 minutes, and he's ready to release some energy.

    As I talk about Jacob's journey through severe autism with his parents, Rabbi Brad and Elana Artson, Jacob takes a...

  • Public money for Jewish schools:
    Free not-quite-but-sort-of Jewish education

    August 28, 2008 | 1:49 am

    At the Ben Gamla school in Hollywood, Fla., students can get kosher food in the cafeteria, and many wear kippahs to school. They engage in acts of chesed, they worry about speaking lashon hara, and they are taught to treat each other and their teachers with derech eretz. But...
  • Parents cash in on kids’ Birthright

    July 18, 2008 | 6:01 pm

    Jenny Meyer was feeling guilty, and she was willing to use that guilt to get what she wanted -- a free trip to Israel for her parents.

    Judy and Wayne Meyer live in La Grange, Ill. (about 13 miles west of Chicago) -- the nearest synagogue is 30 minutes away -- and had been talking...

  • Extending the Birthright privilege

    July 17, 2008 | 12:06 am

    Sophie Ambrose grew up without religion on a hippie commune near Jerusalem, Ark. Her mother had rejected Judaism, her father had rejected his Christian background. Ambrose explored churches on her own as a teenager, took a world religions class in college, and as a graduate student...
  • Same-sex marriage and the fabric of society: What does it all mean?

    June 17, 2008 | 9:04 pm

    If you look at the fine print, last month's landmark Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage doesn't change much in practical terms. Domestic partnership, available to Californians since 2005, gave couples nearly all the same legal rights and responsibilities as marriage,...
  • Shoah survivors ‘graduate’ from New Jew

    June 5, 2008 | 2:35 pm

    At first glance, the idea seemed sort of maudlin.

    New Community Jewish High School (NCJHS) awarded eight Holocaust survivors honorary high school diplomas last Wednesday night, symbolically handing them back a part of their adolescence that had been stolen by the war.

    The emotions...

  • Valley ‘Walk for Darfur’ raises $35,000

    June 5, 2008 | 2:30 pm

    More than 1,400 people marched up Vanowen Street and across Victory Boulevard in West Hills last Sunday to raise funds and awareness about the genocide in Darfur. The second annual three-mile Walk for Darfur raised more than $35,000 for Jewish World Watch's work in refugee support,...
  • New generation has a new take on Israel

    May 15, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    Earlier this spring, David Weiner, a 32-year-old social studies curriculum publisher from Los Angeles, went on an unlikely pairing of back-to-back missions to Israel.

    His first week in Israel, he and a mini-bus full of peers in their 20s and 30s visited grantees of the New Israel...

  • New group for school and shul rabbis addresses shared issues

    April 17, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    A new group of Orthodox day school principals and pulpit rabbis on Los Angeles' Westside began meeting a few months ago to work through issues that overlap the classroom and the synagogue.

    Since December, a group of 10 rabbis has discussed issues ranging from bar and bat mitzvah...

  • Battle for gay marriage rights gains Jewish support

    April 10, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    For years, Robin Tyler has been trying to wed her partner, Diane Olson. Every Valentine's Day they show up at the courthouse with a wedding cake and their attorney, Gloria Allred, only to be denied a marriage license. Last month, Tyler sat in the plaintiff's chair in a case before...
  • Loving your veggies can lighten the seder

    April 10, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    Faye Levy doesn't look like anyone who's ever had a problem with her weight. The prolific cookbook author stands at 4-foot-10, and weighs about 100 pounds.

    But somewhere in the mid-1980s, just as she was working on "Chocolate Sensations" and "Dessert Sensations," she realized that...
  • Jewish women change their destinies by testing for genetic mutation

    March 27, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    Erika Taylor didn't want to know whether she had the breast cancer gene.

    "My thinking was I would never get a prophylactic mastectomy," Taylor, 44, said of the idea of removing her breasts as a preventive measure. "I just thought it was horrible thing to do to myself, and if I...

  • Historic Jewish merry-go-rounds up for sale

    March 27, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    In a storage yard in Long Beach, painted ponies in rose garlands prance atop a giant wooden disc, waiting for a new owner.

    The Illions Supreme Carousel, which twirled riders for decades at the L.A. County Fairgrounds in Pomona, is one of the most elaborate wooden carousels carved at...

  • Jerusalem killing hits home for local yeshiva students

    March 10, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    Aaron Begin, 17, stands in front of a bulletin board in the corridor of Yeshiva of Los Angeles (YULA) boys high school. He stares at pictures of boys his own age grieving over friends gunned down at Mercaz Harav Yeshiva while they studied in the library. He studies the photos of...
  • L.A.‘s Jewish high schools are all over the map

    February 28, 2008 | 5:00 pm

    Yael Glouberman, an eighth-grader at Yeshivat Yavneh in Hancock Park, is awaiting admission letters from four very different high schools: Shalhevet, a Modern Orthodox coed school; Milken, a pluralistic Jewish school; YULA (Yeshiva of Los Angeles) Girls High School, an Orthodox...
  • Scrolls for sale

    February 22, 2008 | 12:00 pm

    The calligraphy on the coffee-colored parchment is crisp and clear, with delicately ascending crowns adorning the Hebrew letters. But rather than being unfurled on a bima and read by a proud bar mitzvah boy, this water-stained fragment of a Torah scroll from Turkey -- thought to be...
  • LimmudLA—by the numbers

    February 21, 2008 | 5:00 pm

    Participants:* 634
    Sponsors: 14
    Presenters 133
    Sessions: 262
    Films: 21
    Artists: 23
    On-site volunteers: 227
    Steering committee: 14
    Chairs: 2
    Executive director: 1
    *Participants for the entire conference. An additional 16 joined for Sunday only and...
  • LimmudLA: Chance encounters, many choices

    February 21, 2008 | 5:00 pm

    LimmudLA - By the Numbers

    Participants:* 634
    Sponsors: 14
    Presenters 133
    Sessions: 262
    Films: 21
    Artists: 23
    On-site volunteers: 227
    Steering committee: 14
    Chairs: 2
    Executive director: 1
    *Participants for the entire conference. An additional 16...
  • Chai Center rabbi explains ‘off the handle’ e-mails

    February 14, 2008 | 5:00 pm

    The Chai Center presents itself as an open and non-judgmental address for Jews looking to learn more about Judaism, to have an authentic Jewish experience, or simply to meet other Jews.

    "All our activities are for Conservative, Reform, nonaffiliates, & any Jew that moves! They...

  • Passover scholastic debate conflict resolved, sort of

    January 17, 2008 | 7:00 pm

    After months of contentious back and forth over the scheduling of the statewide high school debate tournament on the first night of Passover, Jewish leaders and tournament organizers have reached a half-hearted detente that will not change the date but will ensure such a scheduling...
  • Teacher’s impact creates lasting memories and values

    January 3, 2008 | 7:00 pm

    Morah Malka will understand.

    She'll get that I am focusing on Alan Rosen because he was my teacher and not because she and the other recipients of the 18th annual Milken Family Foundation Jewish Educator Awards are any less worthy of notice than Alan, who also received the award last...

  • Labor Zionist ideals live on at Gilboa

    December 13, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    In real life, Leo Goldberg doesn't dance and sing.

    But at Camp Gilboa, where he's spent summers for the past 9 years, Leo Goldberg dances. And he sings. A lot -- and loudly.

    "There's this emphasis on everyone being able to express themselves, and in not being limited to the way you...

  • Can nonprofits rake it in with raffles?

    November 22, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    This December, some lucky soul out there will win a million-dollar home in West Hills, and Kadima Hebrew Academy will pocket $1 million to benefit the school.


    Actually, probably not. The more likely scenario is that the grand prize winner of Kadima's first stab at a...

  • Holocaust remembrance—Exodus redux

    November 8, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    Sitting by an open screen door, Tante Surcha switches off the television when I walk in. I lean into her recliner to kiss her cheek, and ask how she is feeling after her hip surgery. She gives a shrug and an OK, and eyes the notebook and digital voice recorder I've just pulled from...
  • Get ready Jewish leaders, the Next Generation is here

    November 8, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    We gave them melting ice caps, outsourcing and global terrorism. They're giving us -- energy and optimism?

    If the group of Gen Y-ers -- also known as Millenials or NextGens or iGens -- who gathered for a Jewish leadership conference in Santa Monica last week are any indication, it...

  • Are school trips worth the cost?

    November 1, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    • Sixth-Grade Trip to Catalina: $400
    • Senior Trip to Poland and Israel: $4,000
    • Educational Value: Priceless
    Milken Community High School 11th-grader Rebecca Suchov considers her elementary and middle school trips to Colorado, Arizona and Washington, D.C., -- and any number of local...
  • Milken students win first high school X PRIZE

    November 1, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Milken Community High School students joined the space race this week when two seniors won the first-ever X PRIZE competition for high schoolers. On Sunday, Michael Hakimi and Talia Nour-Omid took home the first Pete Conrad Spirit of Innovation Award for their concept of developing...
  • Class Notes: Rockies, Ramah,  Shalhevet, Conejo Book-A-Thon

    November 1, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    In an impressive show of collaboration, Denver's Robert E. Loup Jewish Community Center, Ramah of the Rockies and the Allied Jewish Federation of Colorado together purchased 360 acres of scenic land in Deckers, Colo., to open Camp Ramah in the Rockies and J-CC Ranch Camp at the...
  • Volunteers drive eclectic learning at LimmudLA

    October 25, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    You can feel the ruach in this Limmud UK video
    At the Limmud conference in England three years ago, Angeleno Judy Aronson attended a session on the Jews and the Beatles, where she sat next to the former neighbor of Beatle's manager Brian Epstein. She tried to keep up with Romanians...
  • Class Notes: Mayor kicks off ‘Reading Rainbow,’ Ramah’s Ezra Program gets housing help

    October 4, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Mayor Kicks Off Reading Rainbow

    Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo and City Councilmember Jose Huizar joined Jewish Federation President John Fishel at Roosevelt High School this week to kick off a new year of Koreh L.A., The Federation's literacy program that...

  • No debate about it—California high school tournament takes place on Passover

    September 30, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    The annual California high school debate tournament traditionally attracts more than 800 contestants to its weekend-long event, many of them Jewish and all of them students who have worked long and hard to prepare for the intense competition. Last May, when it was discovered that the...
  • The secret life of etrogs

    September 27, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Ari Greenspan and his wife, Shari, had been walking through a vast and dense citron orchard carved into a lush valley in Morocco's arid Atlas Mountains for several hours when they happened upon a small house. A Berber tribesman emerged and signaled to the Greenspans to wait a moment...
  • Transcendence—a true story for Yom Kippur

    September 20, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Phil and Laura both look a lot like their mom, in different ways," remarks Abby Leibman, Philip and Laura Donney's legal guardian.

    Abby was trying to explain that for her, Phil and Laura evoke the presence of her twin sister, Nina Leibman, who 11 years ago was murdered by her...

  • 'The Joy (and the Oy) of Cooking' with kids

    September 8, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    It's all about the food processor.

    As long as it involves a whirring blade or a spinning disc that will pulverize anything that has the misfortune to meet it, my 11-year-old son is there.

    Yair recently graduated my Cuisinart tutorial, replete with graphic descriptions of what might...

  • Class notes: Students attend ‘Israel High;’ Boychik Scouts; Honors abound

    September 8, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Shayna Gilbert agreed to humor her daughter by letting her apply to a high school program in Israel, thinking she wouldn't get in and the plan would never work.

    But this week, Noa Miriam Gilbert-McNabb is leaving for high school in Kfar Chabad through the Elite Academy, a program...

  • School to raffle off million-dollar home

    August 16, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Kadima Hebrew Academy is hoping to raise funds through one of the latest tools -- a million-dollar home raffle. Kadima is selling 18,000 tickets at $150 each to give away a furnished and landscaped five-bedroom, four-bathroom, newly constructed home in West Hills.

    "A few years ago,...
  • Rethinking—and revitalizing—religious schools

    August 16, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Like most kids Jewish kids in the 1970s, Devorah Moos Hankin didn't like religious school, nor did she get much out of it. She remembers learning by rote, with a teacher standing at the board writing Hebrew letters.

    Her sons are having a much different experience at Temple Emanuel in...

  • Gourmet kosher brings out fear factor

    August 9, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    I drew the line at locusts. I didn't care how cool it was that they were kosher, or that some rabbis in Algeria and Morocco say they are a delicacy. I wasn't going to eat a locust. Locusts are bugs. I don't eat bugs. Bugs are gross.

    Locust -- dried, fried and certified -- was the...


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