Tree of Life Says its Building will Reopen as a ‘Center for Jewish life in the United States’

October 21, 2019
The Tree of Life synagogue building, the site of an attack a year ago that left 11 worshipers dead, will reopen as a “center for Jewish life in the United States.” The Tree of Life Congregation issued a statement to announce its “vision” for the building on Friday. The building, which was home to three different congregations, has not reopened since the Oct. 27, 2019 attack. The attack left the building “unsuitable for worship,” according to the statement. It was in need of serious repair and renovation before the attack took place, it also said. Source: ... Read more about Tree of Life Says its Building will Reopen as a ‘Center for Jewish life in the United States’

Jewish Prisoners in Michigan Will Get Certified Kosher Meals Under Proposed Settlement

October 15, 2019
Jewish prisoners in Michigan could start receiving certified kosher meals due to a proposed settlement to a class-action lawsuit against the Michigan Department of Corrections. There are about 200 Jewish prisoners in Michigan jails who have requested kosher meals but have since 2013 been provided with a vegan meal that is supposed to be appropriate for prisoners of all non-Christian religions, the Detroit Free Press ... Read more about Jewish Prisoners in Michigan Will Get Certified Kosher Meals Under Proposed Settlement

Breaking Down the Sukkah Business 

October 11, 2019
Once Sukkot begins, observant Jews will spend the eight-day festival in outdoor huts that remind us of the fragility of our existence. If that sounds heavy, Avi Lazar, founder of Luxury Sukkahs, is here to remind everyone that Sukkot is all about joy.  “It’s a beautiful holiday, the happiest of all the Jewish holidays,” the 38-year-old told the Journal. “It’s called zman simchateinu — the time of our happiness.” Source: Breaking Down the... Read more about Breaking Down the Sukkah Business 


Stereotyping is the ascription of generalized characteristics to a whole group of people, thus describing individuals by the characterization, usually a caricature, of the whole.


Abraham is the patriarch, acknowledged as the father of the lineage of faith by the Jewish, Christian, and Islamic traditions. He is presumed to have lived sometime in the period 2000-1700 BCE. He is the father of Isaac by Sarah (Genesis 12.25), and the “Friend of God” and Father of Ishmael by Hagar (Qur’an 37.83-113), and the exemplar of faith. (Galatians 3-4).


Hallah is the braided bread that is blessed and eaten at the beginning of the Shabbat on Friday at sundown.


A minyan (plural: minyanim) is the quorum of Jews, traditionally ten adult men, necessary to recite certain prayers.

Genesis, Book of

The first book of the Humash or Five Books of Moses, Genesis (or Bereishit, meaning ‘In the Beginning’) details the Jewish understanding of the creation of the universe, from the seven days of creation, through the Garden of Eden, ending with the events of Joseph and his brothers in Egypt (the fathers of the Twelve Tribes).


A mahzor is a Jewish prayer book containing the special liturgies and prayers for High Holy Days and other festivals.


A Greek word first used in the Hellenistic period, Diaspora refers to the “dispersion” of Jewish communities living in countries other than Israel. Today, the term "diaspora" (all lowercase) is also used to describe other religious communities, living apart from their land of origin.


Kiddush means sanctification and is a Jewish prayer recited over wine sanctifying the Sabbath or a holiday. The term can also refer to the meal as a whole that accompanies the blessing over the wine.


Sephardic is an adjective used to refer to the Jewish culture which developed in Spain and the Mediterranean, in contradistinction to Ashkenazi Jewry, which has its distinctive roots in Germany and Eastern Europe. The culture and practices of Sephardic Judaism first came to the United States with Sephardic Jews who had settled in Latin America before coming to North America.


A convent is a religious association and residential home of a religious order, particularly an order of women or nuns; the term is commonly used in both the Christian and Buddhist traditions.


The Reconstructionist movement is a recent development in American Judaism, beginning with Mordecai M. Kaplan (1881 - 1982) who understood Judaism to be a civilization and culture, kept vibrant by constantly changing and adapting to new situations. The central academic institution of Reconstructionism is the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College (RRC) founded in 1968 in the Philadelphia suburbs.


A yeshiva is a traditional Jewish rabbinic academy for the study of Torah and Talmud.