Jewish Journal

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  • Two Israeli men killed, 2 injured, in Jerusalem stabbing attack

    2 days ago

    Two Israeli men in their 40s died of their wounds Saturday night after being stabbed in Jerusalem’s Old City in a terror attack.

    One of the men’s wife is in serious condition and their two-year-old baby was lightly wounded.

    The men were stabbed in the upper body and were unconscious when paramedics arrived at the scene.

    Read more at timesofisrael.com.

  • Forgiveness

    3 days ago

    I was standing with my brother on the top floor of a hotel in Atlanta having checked in for a conference he had organized.  The elevators were jammed and they didn’t have enough to accommodate all the guests.  More, some of them went to the lower floors and others to the upper.  We...

  • Jewish groups urge passage of gun control legislation

    3 days ago

    This post was originally published on jewishinsider.com.

    Major Jewish organizations are lining up behind President Barack Obama’s call on Congress to pass effective gun control legislation in wake of the horrific shooting and the killing of at least nine students at Umpqua...

  • Jewish community reacts to the passing of Rabbi Jacob Pressman

    3 days ago

    Community reactions to the passing of Rabbi Jacob Pressman.

    Rabbi Adam Kligfeld

    Temple Beth Am

    There is no Jewish Los Angeles as we know it without Rabbi Jacob Pressman. There is no Temple Beth Am, no Camp Ramah, no University of Judaism/American Jewish University, no...

  • Rabbi Jacob Pressman, spiritual leader of Temple Beth Am, dies at 95

    By Michael Berenbaum

    3 days ago

    Rabbi Jacob Pressman, spiritual leader of Temple Beth Am for 35 years, community leader and civil rights activist, died peacefully at his home on Thursday morning, Oct. 1.

    Funeral services will be held  Sunday, Oct. 4 at 10:30 a.m. at Temple Beth Am, 1039 S, La  Cienega Blvd.,...

  • Hurricane Joaquin: Can Jews take down their sukkahs for a storm?

    4 days ago

    As Hurricane Joaquin gains steam off the southeastern coast of the United States, the question has begun to circulate online: Are Jews allowed to take down their sukkahs in the case of a storm?

    The holiday of Sukkot, which began last Sunday, runs through this Sunday evening....

  • Israel turned a gas bonanza into an antitrust headache

    4 days ago

    When the Leviathan gas field was discovered off the coast of Israel in 2010, it was pitched as a game-changer – a vast energy reserve that would transform the economy and bolster public finances for years to come.

    Five years on, poor policymaking, political infighting and a...

  • Laugh Factory, an annual sanctuary for the ultra-unaffiliated

    By Melissa Weller

    5 days ago

    For 35 years, the Laugh Factory in West Hollywood has been a revolving door of comedy legends and hopefuls, up-and-comers and burnouts, roaring crowds and silenced rooms. It’s seen boys become men and men become girls. 

    But whichever way the punches roll any given night, the...

  • Why Jews don’t have a pope

    By David Suissa

    5 days ago

    I know plenty of Jews who would love to see a pope-like figure tell other Jews what to do. An Orthodox pope, for example, would have the power to boot out “Open Orthodox” rabbis who have been irritating the establishment lately with their progressive ideas. You mess with tradition,...

  • “You’re a Member of a What?!”

    5 days ago

    “Somebody’s got to do it,” we muse when we hear about someone pursuing a career or activity we cannot fathom doing ourselves. Funeral directors, hospice workers, chevrah kadisha members (Jewish burial societies) and others in contact with death get this sort of reaction on...

  • Bernie Sanders introduces himself to the Jewish community in Iowa

    1 week ago

    This article was originally posted at jewishinsider.com.

    Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders paid a first-time visit to the Jewish community in Iowa on Sunday.

    The meeting took place at The Caspe Terrace as part of the ‘Presidential Speaker Series’ hosted by the...

  • Return, reboot, reload

    1 week ago

    In 1913, a 27 year old Jew, who had grown up in the home of totally assimilated, wealthy German parents, came to a Kol Nidre service in Berlin for what he thought would be his last time.  He had decided to convert to Christianity.  This service was to be his way of saying goodbye...

  • Reclaiming JEW

    1 week ago

    Jew. Jew. Jew.
    I’m a Jew.
    I imagine the majority of us here are Jews. We’re Jews.
    And friends of Jews.

    What is it about the word “Jew”?

    Comedian Louis CK observed: “Jew is a funny word, because Jew is the only word that is the polite...

  • Happy new year, Pope Francis

    1 week ago

    Dear Pope Francis,

    I’m sure your much-anticipated visit to the United States was not timed to coincide with our season of holy days, a time of personal renewal and return to God, all in celebration of the world’s creation. But we are delighted to share this special season with...

  • Trump rally incident, Carson anti-Muslim remarks spur civility call by 2 Jewish groups

    2 weeks ago

    Two Jewish groups pleaded for greater civility in political discourse after the loyalty of American Muslims was called into question during the Republican presidential campaign.

    The Anti-Defamation League in a statement Monday cited an interview with Ben Carson, a physician and...

  • Israeli ministry plows ahead with ‘world Jewry’ project, even as funding and future remain uncertain

    2 weeks ago

    With a budget reaching $300 million, it was conceived as a broad partnership between the Israeli government and leading Diaspora Jewish groups. Its goal: to create a stronger connection between global Jews and Israel.

    But nearly two years after its launch was announced with much...

  • Torah Animals and Death Practices: The Scapegoat, the Red Heifer, and the Broken-necked Heifer

    2 weeks ago

    Rambam says that some rules are “Supra-rational” – these are rules that appear irrational and beyond our logical understanding. He gives as examples three practices regarding animals - the Azazel, the Parah Adumah, and the Eglah Arufah. But is there any rationality, maybe some...

  • Goldman CEO Blankfein says has ‘highly curable’ form of cancer

    2 weeks ago

    Lloyd Blankfein, the chairman and chief executive officer of Goldman Sachs Group Inc, said on Tuesday he had a "highly curable" form of cancer and would be able to work mostly as normal during treatment.

    The veteran Wall Street boss, who navigated the U.S. investment bank through...

  • Yom Kippur 2015

    By Ilana Angel

    2 weeks ago

    Tonight marks the beginning of Yom Kippur. Though I speak to God every single day, Yom Kippur is special because when every Jew prays at the same time it is a chorus being sent to God and that matters. I hope we are all inscribed in the Book of Life and have a year of health and...

  • A Polish spy named Magda

    By Tom Tugend

    2 weeks ago

    “I don’t know how I did it, but I did it,” declares 93-year old Magda Kasprzycki, a West Hollywood resident, in the eponymous documentary “Magda.”

    The “it” unwinds gradually in the 60-minute film, starting with a sheltered childhood in an affluent, scholarly family in the Polish...

  • Netanyahu to quiz Putin on Russia’s reinforcement of Syria

    2 weeks ago

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu flew to Moscow on Monday to seek reassurance from President Vladimir Putin about Russia's military deployment in Syria and to lay out Israel's concerns about the risk of weapons reaching militants on its borders.

    With fighter planes part of the...

  • Walk with me: The Akeidah as a call to communal support

    2 weeks ago

    Today we cry out to Hashem as individuals who have strayed and sinned. We pour out our hearts, pains, and petitions before God asking for life. We know from the Gemara in Masechet Rosh HaShanah 18a that today we pass before God as “בני מרון”, as sheep being counted one by one by...

  • The search for meaning

    2 weeks ago

    The basic accoutrements of any typical workspace: a computer connected to the Internet, a phone, a desk with some drawers, a printer. Maybe a coffee maker, a small fridge for snacks. These are the bare minimum you need if you have realistic hopes for getting any real work done.  

  • On faith, belief and God

    2 weeks ago

    I love this quip from a favorite comedian of mine: “I have a lot of beliefs.  And I don’t live by any of them!” 

    It’s different to have beliefs than to live by them.  And that difference speaks to a little problem we have.  Here it is: I am not sure we all believe in the God we...

  • Power plays

    2 weeks ago

    I want to share a story about a couple who’ve been married for 19 years.

    Their relationship is a series of power plays in which they subtly and sometimes not so subtly try to control one another.

    They're’ from the Boston area. 
They have 2 kids
. Both have special needs – one...

  • Going to bat for every Jew

    2 weeks ago

    Last week, I traveled to Washington DC to join with a couple thousand pro-Israel activists to voice our deep concerns about the nuclear agreement with Iran. A few dozen of us met with our local Congressman Ted Lieu and were excited to hear that our calls and letters made a...

  • Fighting for the soul of the Jewish people

    By Rabbi John Rosove

    2 weeks ago

    These are challenging times for the Jewish people.

    Despite our being the wealthiest and most privileged Jews in our 3600-year history, and despite the state of Israel being the most powerful, democratic and humane nation in the Middle East, we Jews feel vulnerable and afraid, and...

  • High Holy Days: Los Angeles rabbis share their sermons for 5776

    2 weeks ago

    Some of Los Angeles' many renowned rabbis have shared their High Holy Day sermons so that we can all learn from their wisdom.

    The Jewish Journal welcomes the sermons of all rabbis from this year's High Holy Days. Please submit to sermons@jewishjournal.com, and please include a...

  • Our story ... Our mission ... Our fight

    2 weeks ago

    Many of you know that I had a “previous life” composing and editing music for TV shows and movies.  For most of my twenties, I was working on what is now the Sony Studios lot in Culver City – which somehow led me to rabbinical study in Jerusalem… but that’s a sermon for a...

  • Rescuing God

    2 weeks ago

    This is the first holiday in 45 years that Rabbi Harold Schulweis will not be on the bima. In his memory we offer this sermon.

    Elie Wiesel offered a parable about our times:

    Once upon a time, Man complained to God: “You have no idea how hard it is to be human -- to live a life...

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