One night some years ago, two powerful Jewish men in media, one from New York and one from Los Angeles, were walking together through the streets of Jerusalem when they hatched a little idea.
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the most influential American rabbi of them all? Rabbi Marvin Hier of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles, according to a list published Monday in Newsweek. An article titled "American Jews: The List -- Choosing the Chosen," rates America's 50 most influential rabbis -- with three of the top five working in Los Angeles (a total of 11 Angelenos are named).
A brief rundown of the national synagogue revitalization programs that have arisen since the early 1990s.
The first time the word "rebbetzin" appeared in The New York Times was in 1931, in a review of a book about Yiddish theater. The term stood untranslated; the reviewer and his editors assumed that readers would understand the meaning.
Erich Lessing received his first camera when he exited the synagogue from his bar mitzvah in Vienna in 1936.
"There was no idea of taking up photography as a profession," said Lessing, 82, from his house in Austria. "In a good Jewish family in Vienna you would only be a lawyer or a doctor."