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  • Liberal Strains

    November 11, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    The Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society staged a national "summit" a few weeks back to discuss the latest crisis in Jewish refugee relief. The problem: not enough Jewish refugees.

    It's no joke. A decade ago, when 40,000 Russian Jews were arriving annually, a huge national infrastructure...

  • Finally, A Bat Mitzvah

    By Rob Kutner

    November 11, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    Growing up in Iran, Soraya Nazarian felt she was missing something at synagogue. "I wanted to know what we were studying, what we were reading, what the rabbi was teaching... but it was so crowded back in the women's section, all I could hear was 'Shh, shh.'"

    But this full-time...

  • Our Own Legacy

    November 11, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    This week, even as PBS was airing its two-part biography of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, I was on my own journey into early feminism; this time of the Jewish variety.

    Anyone with Internet access should go right away to Jewish Women's Archives (www.jwa.org), for Jewish...

  • Out of the Dustbin

    By Toby Axelrod

    November 11, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    Inna Orlowski sits at an outdoor cafe near the Jewish high school here, sipping a cappuccino. Bicyclists pass, sending long shadows across the cobblestone street.

    It is a long way from Russia's Ural Mountains, where Orlowski, 20, with close-cropped blond curls and a ready smile, was...

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  • What’s Good for the Jews

    November 11, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    If you read nothing else in this issue, let me urge you to look carefully at J.J. Goldberg's column on page 6. It touches on matters that stir the waters -- or so it did for me -- beyond this week's news. It points in fact to the past and the future; and to a crisp and focused moment...
  • The Real-Life ‘Story of Us’

    By Rob Eshman

    November 4, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    When radio-humorist Howard Stern announced earlier this month that he and his wife Alison were separating after 21 years of marriage, he was, according to therapist and author Dr. Betty Polston, right in keeping with a disturbing trend. The divorce rate in America is declining,...
  • Praying for Southern Baptists

    By Curt Schleier

    November 4, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    I'm not surprised that Southern Baptists are praying for the conversion of the Jews. I'm praying for Southern Baptists. I pray that they see how hypocritical and offensive it is for them to say they love Jews and in the same breath trash our religion.

    Judaism is trashed when a...

  • No Miracles Needed

    By Rabbi Elazar Muskin

    November 4, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    A young man was courting a young woman, who later became his wife, when he experienced a strange occurrence. The two purchased a box of Cracker Jacks and inside they discovered a little note that proclaimed in bold print: "CONGRATULATIONS! TODAY YOU ARE GOING TO MEET A MAN WITH BLUE...
  • The October Dilemma

    By Curt Schleier

    October 28, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    For me, the October dilemma consists of finding Halloween candy to pass out to trick-or-treaters that I will not eat, no matter how desperate or distraught I become.

    For my children, the challenge is creating peer and parent-approved costumes that will also work for Purim.

    But for many...

  • Around Town

    By Curt Schleier

    October 28, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    The Marx Brothers, The Three Stooges, Jack Benny, Milton Berle, Carl Reiner, Mel Brooks, Lenny Bruce, Jackie Mason, Woody Allen and, of course, Seinfeld. The history of American comedy is the history of America's funniest Jews. But while being Jewish and funny has never been mutually...
  • Thus Spaketh Me…

    October 28, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Vacations used to sound like this -- "Brugges? Wow, sure, there's a train in an hour... let's just stay another night... you look so beautiful in this moonlight... don't worry, nobody's gonna come hiking through here now... I love you, too..."

    Now they sound like, "Say please!...

  • End Papers

    October 21, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    The family gathers at the bedside. Sons, daughters and grandchildren ask each other, "What should we do for zedeh?" "Since his stroke he doesn't talk any more," laments a daughter. A brother adds, "I don't think he recognizes any of us." "It seems to me that he is suffering. I don't...
  • A Battle With No Winners

    October 21, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    The High Holy Day period that just ended is, for most Jews, a time of solitary reflection, aptly called the Days of Awe for its mood of confrontation with the Eternal. For some of us, though, it's also a season for family togetherness, a cozy time to snuggle up with the ones you love...
  • Haggadah

    October 21, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    A 1998 article about Chicago collector Stephen Durschslag's haggadah collection set the number of different haggadot on his shelves at 4,500, increasing almost daily.

    It's probably impossible to know how many haggadot exist, but it's obvious that for every Jew, there should be a...

  • The Da Vinci of La Cienega

    By Julie G Fax

    October 21, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    "Have you ever seen a melodeon?"

    Rabbi Jacob Pressman starts to get up from his recliner, but Marjorie, his wife of 57 years, beats him to it, getting the long black case from behind a guitar and accordion leaning against a well-stocked bookshelf.

    "It's a mixture of a piano and a...

  • Religious Studies

    October 7, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Aish HaTorah: 9:30-11:10 a.m. "The Understanding Minyan," focusing on the meaning of prayers, Hebrew-reading skills and the "how- to" of the synagogue service. Saturdays. Kiddush included. 9102 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 278-8672.

    B'nai Horin: Torah classes begin. "Prayer for...

  • The Conversion of the Jews, Part II

    By Rob Eshman

    October 7, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Could there be a more fitting way to open an evening of Catholic-Jewish dialogue than by singing a gospel rendition of "The Storm Is Passing Over"? For the better part of two millennia, the Catholic Church and its Protestant offshoots have hammered away at Jews and their religion...
  • ‘Voyage of the Damned’

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    October 7, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Hundreds of Angelenos crowded the University of Judaism on two separate evenings late last month, as two researchers from the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum told a tale as compelling as any Hollywood film.

    On May 13, 1939, a twin-smokestack luxury liner set sail from Hamburg, Germany,...

  • Jewish in Europe

    September 30, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    As a young man, fresh out of college, I lived in Europe -- in Paris -- struggling to become a writer and searching for the adult identity that had thus far eluded me. Then, less than a decade later, I found myself living abroad again -- first in Brussels and then in London. In each...
  • The Completion of an Extraordinary Two-Year Experience

    By John R. Fishel

    September 30, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    In July, I was privileged to join almost 80 other Los Angelenos, many of their spouses and a few of their children, in Jerusalem for the completion of an extraordinary two-year experience. The Wexner Heritage Foundation has just given our community a wonderful gift. Eighty young men...
  • End Papers

    September 30, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    The family gathers at the bedside. Sons, daughters and grandchildren ask each other, "What should we do for zedeh?" "Since his stroke he doesn't talk any more," laments a daughter. A brother adds, "I don't think he recognizes any of us." "It seems to me that he is suffering. I don't...
  • Let’s Hear It for the Ram

    By Marlene Adler Marks

    September 16, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Sunset on Sunday. As Rosh Hashanah was ending, the local Chabad rabbi and a friend were walking down the hillside outside my home carrying rams' horns.

    "Hey Marlene, have you heard the shofar yet?" the young rabbi inquired. Of course I had, but it was wonderful to be asked. The sight...

  • Let’s Celebrate! It’s Yom Kippur!

    By Julie G Fax

    September 16, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    In the waning hours of Yom Kippur, the last rays of sun cast long shadows through the stained-glass windows. It is time for "Ne'ila," the final prayer in a day filled with prayer, when the gates on high, opened especially wide for this day, begin their final closing.

    So still, so...

  • Not Alone

    By Marlene Adler Marks

    September 9, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    This column is directed to a real-life young woman I'll call Heather, who's enrolled in the conversion program at the University of Judaism.

    Dear Heather,

    Rosh Hashanah begins this evening at sundown, and I am thinking about you. For the first time, you will be joining the greater...

  • They Have Your Attention—But Can They Keep It?

    By Julie G Fax

    September 9, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Fresh out of seminary, Rabbi Naomi Levy gave High Holiday sermons the way she thought they were supposed to sound -- formal, ponderous, laced with phrases such as "my dear friends." Every once in a while, however, she would look up from her prepared text and slip into her natural...

  • Jewish Journeys

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    September 9, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Joshua Hammer's book is called "Chosen by God: A Brother's Journey" (Hyperion Press), and while the titular journey refers to his brother, it may very well apply to Hammer himself.

    In Newsweek's Nov. 8th issue, Hammer -- a foreign correspondent who will become the magazine's Berlin...

  • Where Were the Rabbis?

    September 9, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Counselors and staff of the Jewish Community Centers in Los Angeles were overwhelmed by the kindness and support of local clergy in the aftermath of the Aug. 10 shooting, which left five wounded. But they were surprised and disappointed by the fact that it was almost exclusively...
  • Beyond Puppets and Cookies

    By Beverly Gray

    September 2, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Eleven-year-old Katie Zeisl, who attends Hebrew School at Adat Ari El, knows that the High Holidays are a time to "tell God I'm really sorry and I'll try not to do it again." But she's skeptical about making promises she may not be able to keep, and she has little use for her...

  • Lessons From ‘My Jewtor’

    By Teresa Strasser

    September 2, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    We're about the same age and, from a distance, it almost looks like we could be sisters. But that's where the similarities end between Melissa and me.

    Melissa is what I call "My Jewtor," a woman assigned to me by a local rabbi to tutor me about Judaism. For months now, I've been...

  • Off the Air

    By Avi Machlis

    September 2, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    To Israel Radio's ear, the Reform and Conservative message "There's more than one way to be Jewish" may be too "ideologically controversial."

    The decision to delay the movements' ads prompted threats from the liberal Jewish streams that they will petition the Supreme Court against...

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