Going for gold
The other side of the nightmareA dramatic story of the Jewish resistance in World War II Poland
A run for a causeKaplen JCC on the Palisades brings out the best in its racers
Bone marrow transplant needed — urgentlyBenefit concert will highlight the plight of young Fair Lawn boy
Mr. Bellow’s planet
Portrait of a marriageTwo local artists, two computers, two styles, one shared life
Helping to break the chainFair Lawn family mobilizes to help end child slavery
The Megile of Itzik Manger
An oasis in timeBrewing up “Lager b’Omer”
A triumph from Passaic
How can you be a stranger and a permanent presence at the same time?
How do you balance the eternal truths of the Torah and the specific time-bound, culture-bound lens through which each of us must peer at it?
To Rabbi Shmuel Goldin, who heads Congregation Ahavath Torah in Englewood and is the president of the Rabbinical Council of America, that is the essential conundrum of an authentic Jewish life.
Goldin has just published “Unlocking the Torah Text: Bamidbar,” the fourth and penultimate book in his series on the Torah, the Five Books of Moses. In each book, “what I have done is provide, both for those who have studied Torah before and those who have not, and in-depth yet accessible analysis of the parsha” — the Torah portion read each week on Shabbat.
Dr. Tamara Freeman of Saddle River is a Holocaust music recitalist and educator.
She shares that job description with only a few people worldwide.
“There are only a few Holocaust ethnomusicologists in the world,” said Freeman, who first entered the field by researching the music of the Jews interned in ghettos and concentration camps during World War II.
Another Bible king has been crowned from Passaic.
Asher Brenner, an eighth-grader at YBH of Passaic-Hillel, captured first place in the Hebrew middle school division of the National Bible Contest-Chidon HaTanach (Five Books of Moses, Prophets and Writings) on May 5.
He earned a perfect score.
It is the second year in a row that a YBH eighth-grader has achieved that distinction in the famously difficult competition. Yishai Eisenberg, who recently tied for first place internationally, set the bar high in 2012.
“The von Trapp children don’t play; they march!” Baron von Trapp’s butler reminds Maria, who has suggested sewing new play clothing for the children in her charge.
Many people immediately will recognize that classic line from “The Sound of Music.” However, this scene, starring students from Sinai’s Rabbi Mark & Linda Karasick Shalem High School on May 7 was unusual: The butler and Maria read their lines from cards they held in their hands. And when the von Trapp children came to Maria’s room seeking solace during a scary thunderstorm, one of the kids arrived in a wheelchair and another had Down syndrome.
For the last 13 years, Rabbi Ron Hoffberg has been on a journey that was meant to last a week.
“There was an emergency situation,” he said. “They needed someone in Prague in a hurry, just for a week. That week turned into a year, and that year into 13.”
Hoffberg, spiritual leader of the Masorti (Conservative) community in the Czech Republic, has found that time both exciting and challenging. He will speak about his experiences — and the area he serves — when he visits the Fair Lawn Jewish Center/Congregation B’nai Israel this weekend as scholar in residence.
Professor Stephen M. Berk, who teaches history at Union College in Schenectady, N.Y., can shift easily between different emotional tones.
Ask him about his grandchildren’s school, the Gerrard Berman Day School, and he rhapsodizes.
Ask him about the existential dilemma facing Israel, and the mood darkens. And then, despite all that follows, it ends with hope.
First, the logistics. Berk, the Henry and Sally Schaffer Professor of Holocaust and Jewish Studies at the small, well-regarded liberal arts college near Albany, spoke at a fundraising party for the school in a home in Saddle River.
A literacy workshop held recently for early childhood educators from area yeshivot and Jewish day schools was an opportunity for participants to share their ideas about teaching young students to read.
It also was an opportunity for them to break down barriers and join forces to raise the level of literacy across the religious spectrum of the local Jewish community.
Twenty-two participants from nine Orthodox and Conservative schools attended the April 26 lecture, held at the Gerrard Berman Day School, Solomon Schechter of North Jersey. Professor Mollie Welsh Kruger of the Bank Street College of Education presented the program, called “Literacy Workshop for Early Education Teachers.” The discussion that followed focused on classroom environment and its effect on reading.