If the practice of Judaism is based on synagogue attendance, and if synagogue attendance is based on the passive recitation of prayer, then Judaism is in trouble.
1. The absence of Presence
The Romans are approaching. We wallow in callous pettiness. The city will fall soon.
A security guard shot dead a 46-year-old Jewish man whom he mistook for a terrorist near the Western Wall in Jerusalem.
Purim events in Los Angeles for all ages and adults only.
Ten women participating in a women's prayer service with hundreds of worshippers and supporters at the Western Wall were arrested for wearing prayer shawls.
A temple in an upscale neighborhood of Long Beach, Calif., was vandalized. Two-foot tall swastikas and the words "Nazi" were painted in red spray-paint on the front of the Temple Israel building on Monday night. Temple Israel is the oldest Reform synagogue between Los Angeles and San Diego, the Long Beach Post reported.
A public water reservoir dating to the First Temple period was unearthed next to the Western Wall.
The philosopher Abraham Joshua Heschel emphasized time rather than space as the major category of significance in Judaism. The first divine hallowing in creation was the seventh day, the Sabbath, not any place or thing. When the child asked Menachem Mendel of Kotzk, “Where is God?” he answered, “Whenever you let Him in.” Not “where” but “when,” and not place but time is the locus of godliness.
Bet Tzedek sends its lawyers every day into the diverse communities of our city, representing all who are in need. Jewish Family Services and Jewish Vocational Services do the same. A group at Stephen S. Wise Temple has launched a summer Freedom School branch that gives low-income young people from nearby communities a unique educational opportunity. The Breed Street Shul is turning a historic Boyle Heights temple building into a monument to our past and our future as well as an invaluable community center for a largely Spanish-speaking neighborhood in the Shul’s home community.
Around 2,500 people turned out for the citywide Siyum HaShas celebration at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion Aug. 1. The event marked the completion of the seven-and-a-half year cycle of daily Talmud study known as Daf Yomi.
Twenty-five years ago, Temple Ner Maarav in Encino served nearly 450 families. Today, that number has dwindled to 65.
One of the world's best-known Reform temples reportedly is in turmoil over the unexpected departure of its rabbi.
On Aug. 30, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) held its annual security meeting at its Los Angeles headquarters to advise local Jewish leaders on possible threats facing the community in advance of the High Holy Days.
Ever catch yourself on Rosh Hashanah flipping through the remaining pages of the prayer book, mentally calculating how much longer you’ll be there?
This week we observe the fast of Tisha B’Av, commemorating the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem.
A device believed to be a pipe bomb exploded about [6:45am]. Thursday in the parking lot of a Jewish temple in Santa Monica, authorities said. No details were available regarding injuries or damage.
On Sunday morning, Dec. 12, near the end of his weekend-long stay as a scholar-in-residence at Sinai Temple, bioethicist Dr. Paul Root Wolpe was asked by Rabbi David Wolpe to give a few quick responses to some of the most challenging contemporary bioethical dilemmas. “No,” Dr. Wolpe replied, provoking laughter from the nearly 300 people in attendance. “I can’t give quick responses; I’m a Wolpe.” Dr. Wolpe is professor of bioethics and Jewish bioethics at Emory University as well as senior bioethicist for NASA and the first national bioethics adviser to Planned Parenthood of America. He had already delivered two talks to his brother’s congregation on Shabbat, so one highlight of Sunday’s breakfast was a picture-heavy PowerPoint presentation, which included quite a few photographs of genetically and otherwise engineered animals. He started with hybrids like the beefalo, the zorse (zebra-horse), the cama (camel-lama), the geep (sheep-goat) and, much to the delight of fans of “Napoleon Dynamite,” the liger (lion-tiger). Later, he showed pictures of mice, kittens, pigs, puppies and monkeys that, thanks to some genetic material from jellyfish and deep-sea coral, had been engineered to glow in the dark.
Imagine an 11-year-old kid who wakes up in the middle of the night to berate a group of grown-ups who are saying things he disagrees with. This is what
my friend Rabbi Chaim Seidler-Feller did. It was past midnight, after a long Friday night Shabbat meal, in his childhood home in Brooklyn’s Borough Park neighborhood. His parents and some of their friends were talking about the need to support the new State of Israel, which was then in its infancy.
A bus advertisement campaign by an extreme right-wing group calling for the building of the Third Temple has been removed.
The Our Land of Israel party had put posters on 200 Jerusalem city buses shortly before Passover showing an artist's rendition of the Third Temple on the site now occupied by the Al Aksa Mosque and the slogan "May the Temple be built in our lifetime."
Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was a surprise guest this month at Friday evening's Shabbat services at Stephen S. Wise Temple, after he had accepted an invitation from Rabbi Elie Herscher to allow the congregation to express its appreciation for the mayor's unwavering support for Israel.
Chanukah 5769: Will the Jewish flame of our era burn forth unto our children and our children's children?
Some scholars argue that David's Jerusalem was merely a backwater village glorified into a mythical place by those they say penned the Bible centuries later. Others suggest that true to its biblical description, it was a genuine power overseeing a strong and united kingdom. The discovery of what is being called the Elah Fortress has quickly been used to reinforce the latter argument.
A 2,100-year-old section of the wall surrounding Jerusalem, dating from Hasmonean times, has been unearthed on Mount Zion, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced Wednesday. The excavations have revealed part of the expanded southern city wall, from the Second Temple period, when ancient Jerusalem was at its largest.
Dr. David B. Goldstein from Duke's Institute for Genome Sciences and Policy talks about tracking the genetic history of the ancient Jewish priesthood (kohanim) and the Lost Tribe of Israel, the focus of his new book, "Jacob's Legacy".
A 2,600-year-old clay seal impression was uncovered in Jerusalem's ancient City of David. Bearing the name Gedaliah ben Pashur, the seal impression was uncovered intact recently during archaeological excavations just below the walls of the Old City near the Dung Gate.
Writing your own kinah, or dirge, could help forge a more intimate connection with Tisha B'Av, the fast day that commemorates a series of tragic events in Jewish history
Animal sacrifices are rather messy, and most of us would have a hard time imagining ourselves offering them up upon a Temple altar.
Brenda Levin, associate architect for the renovation and restoration of the original Griffith Observatory building and grounds.
Shatner Horse Trek; Four of a Kind; Star Bright; Mayor Meets Mayor; Social Justice? Here I Am
Rosh Hashanah resolutions.
Non-Jews are common at many Jewish facilities, ensuring the smooth operation of our institutions -- understanding and anticipating the needs of members, meeting the standards of our practices. But Guerrero's story is more than the tale of someone "other" who happens to work among "us." To hear Guerrero tell it, he has learned both the most fundamental and profound of life's lessons by being among Jews.
Letters to the Editor.
Circuit news; Spirit and Chocolate Top Temple Emanuel Installation; Big Fun in Big Apple; Rabbi on Board; Kids Raise the 'Roof'.
On Friday nights, when 13-year-old Michael Rothbart approaches Leo Baeck Temple for Shabbat services, he urges his parents to tune to 87.9 on their radio dial. He is hoping that Avram Mandell, Leo Baeck's educational director and the founding force behind the temple's very low-power radio station, has popped in some pre-recorded Jewish music.
As any Jewish parent knows, it is not unusual for children to resist attending Hebrew school, just as they complain about doing their homework or practicing the piano. During the preteen years, childrens' comprehension of what God means to them is still under development. However, some say parents need to think about how committed they are to raising Jewish children.
For years I've been affiliated with organizations, given charitably and attended synagogue regularly. But after years of knowing and benefiting from me, my Jewish community still has a hard time seeing me, remembering me and finding a place for me.
A Letter to President Bush
Just one year ago, we had proudly taken our first family vacation in Israel. The places where my kids had the most fun -- Haifa, Nahariya, Rosh Hanikra, Safed, Kiryat Shemona -- were bearing the brunt of the Katyusha attacks.
Letters to the Editor
When you first learn that your child is -- or might be -- marrying someone who's not Jewish, you may not feel like celebrating. This can be a difficult and stressful occasion instead of the joyous one you had hoped for. To help you, here are a series of tips from people whose children have intermarried, as well as from outreach professionals and counselors.
Letters to the Editor
The Rev. Rick Warren, who inspired the evangelical church movement with "The Purpose-Driven Life" series and leads the Purpose Driven Network with 400,000 ministers and priests worldwide, will share his insights Friday, June 16, at what is the area's most popular Shabbat service, Friday Night Live at Westwood's Sinai Temple.
Last Friday, when the sun went down in Los Angeles, the Jewish community came alive.
Joanne Rocklin is obsessed with food. On her 60th birthday, she began summarizing her life with the essentials: "I love to cook. I love to eat". But it's her passion for writing that has enabled her to come to terms with her life and her faith.
7 Days in the Arts
We arrived early for the Purim carnival last Sunday. The giant bounce house still lay in a wrinkled, uninflated wad on a corner of the parking lot. The only children around were, like our son, middle school volunteers, corralling the puppies for the puppy-petting booth, lining up bottles for the ring toss.
At Temple Beth Israel, the planting project, which is being done in phases with funding and physical assistance from a Jewish environmental group, has transformed congregants' preconceived notions of drab native plants.
The complaints may sound familiar: Jews were forgetting the ways of their forefathers. They could no longer read, write or speak Hebrew -- having turned to Greek instead. They were not observing the commandments, and could no longer say the prayers. The Sabbath was not being observed: Worse yet, young men were engaging in athletics on the Sabbath, throwing the discus or participating in wrestling competitions (the rabbis were particularly offended that wrestling was in the nude; but my guess is that the Jewish mothers weren't so crazy about all that fighting). There was even a reform movement led by rabbis, Jewish philosophers and Jews practicing new forms of Greek-leavened Judaism.
Born into a strongly Democratic family but later a founder of the Republican Jewish Coalition, Berman, at 51, is a man of strong physique and opinions.
"I am fed up with intermarriage and with rabbis who reach out to gay and intermarried couples," he said during an interview in his spacious Sunset Boulevard office.
As clear-minded and direct today as she was in her youth, Nussbaum these days embodies the history of an era that is quickly slipping away. She is the widow of Rabbi Max Nussbaum, who led this same congregation from 1942 until his death in 1974.