Judaism

Mixed Reactions to Funding of Faith-Based Organizations

February 18, 2001

Source: Los Angeles Times

On February 18, 2001, the Los Angeles Times published an article about the Jewish response to Bush's new faith-based initiative. Many Jewish leaders "remain guarded with Bush, who has...made his Christian faith a prominent part of his political platform. Both the American Jewish Committee and the American Jewish Congress oppose the president's plan... Yet, there is a growing minority of American Jews who... are 'pleased that President Bush is committed to increasing the partnership between government and faith and community-based...

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Minister Claims Orthodox Christians and Jews Reject Inclusive Approach

February 16, 2001

Source: Capital Times

On February 16, 2001, the Madison Capital Times published an article by Rev. Michael A.Schuler of the First Unitarian Society, in which he warns that, under the Bush administration, "conservative Christians [will] try to halt the current drift toward pluralism...Orthodox Christians and Jews reject a more inclusive and open-minded approach to religion because, for them, to be religious means to be sectarian as well." Schuler says that, globally, they have begun to "redouble their efforts to defend the old order," in response to...

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Ohio Interfaith Association Works for Peace and Human Rights

February 16, 2001

Source: The Columbus Dispatch

On February 16, 2001, The Columbus Dispatch reported on the Interfaith Association of Central Ohio, which has 350 members from Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism, Baha'ism, Islam and Judaism. All are volunteers. "The missions of the association...are to educate its members and the public about customs of different faiths and to provide interfaith public worship and ceremonies related to local and global concerns." The association's projects, which range from peace-training programs in public schools to the creation of...

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American Chooses the Life of a Hindu Holy Woman

February 10, 2001

Source: The Houston Chronicle

On February 10, 2001, The Houston Chronicle published an article on 29-year-old Sadhavi Bhagwati, formerly Phoebe Garfield. "The Stanford University graduate was transformed into a living Hindu saint, or holy woman, in four years. In Hinduism, a saint is a person who has attained a high level of personal sanctity through meditation and good works. The individual's guru or swami bestows the rank. A male saint is known as a sadhu; a woman is called sadhavi. Bhagwati is a leading figure of Parmarth Niketan," a Hindu religious...

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Reform Jews' Protest of Anti-Gay Policy Stirs Debate

February 10, 2001

Source: The Atlanta Journal and Constitution

On February 10, 2001, The Atlanta Journal and Constitution reported on the debate between Reform Jews over their leaders' call to cut ties with the Boy Scouts of America in protest against its anti-gay policies. "In metro Atlanta, Reform congregations are debating...over how far they should go in following" this advice. "The strongest advocates of protesting the Scouts' policy on gays say Jews have a special obligation to speak out against discrimination because of their own history of being persecuted...[But]...

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Jewish and Christian Clergy Form Interfaith Group

February 4, 2001

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

On February 4, 2001, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette published an article about a newly formed interfaith group among Jewish, Lutheran, Unitarian, Roman Catholic, and Episcopal clergy from Pittsburgh's northern suburbs. Rabbi Art Donsky hosts the meeting of the group once a month at his synagogue, Temple Ohav Shalom in McCandless, Pennsylvania. "'It's a really great opportunity for people of different faith traditions to be in dialogue with one another,' said the Rev. Duane Morford, senior pastor at the Ingomar United Methodist...

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Museum Exhibit Tells Story of Jewish Pioneers

February 4, 2001

Source: The New York Times

On February 4, 2001, The New York Times published an article on the "Jewish migration westward to New Mexico by wagon train along the Santa Fe Trail. Their number was not great -- by 1917, fewer than 1,000 called New Mexico home -- but these Jews helped shape the economy, culture and political landscape of the region." A new exhibition at the Palace of the Governors of the Museum of New Mexico called "Jewish Pioneers of New Mexico" tells their story. The first settlers were from Germany. "They moved west from the East Coast...

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Modern Jews Eager to Revive Ancient Traditions

February 3, 2001

Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

On February 3, 2001, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that there has been "a growing movement in the United States among Conservative and Reform Jews to adopt or adapt some Orthodox rituals and practices." One of these rituals is "the ancient Jewish tradition known as laying tefillin (pronounced te-Fill-lun)." The ritual involves wrapping a black leather strap around one's body, whose "purpose is to hold firmly in place words from the Jewish sacred scripture, the Torah, concealed and sealed into...black leather boxes......

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New Holy Land Park Stirs Controversy

February 2, 2001

Source: USA TODAY

On February 2, 2001, USA TODAY reported on the Holy Land Experience in Orlando, Florida, which claims to "transport" visitors to the ancient Middle East. Its 15 acres include a replica of the temple of King Herod, a cement copy of the Qumran Caves, where ancient Jews stashed the Dead Sea Scrolls, a palm-tree grove mimicking the Via Dolorosa, the path to Jesus' crucifixion, a Jerusalem City Gate, and "Calvary's Garden Tomb, where [people dressed as ancient Israelites] celebrate the resurrection of Christ." Costumed dramatists tell Old and...

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Use of Jesus' Name in Bush's Inauguration Discussed

January 29, 2001

Source: Star Tribune

On January 29, 2001, the Minneapolis Star Tribune published a commentary by Alan Dershowitz on Franklin Graham's dedication of Bush's inauguration to Jesus Christ. Graham's "particularistic and parochial language," claimed Dershowitz, "excluded tens of millions of American Muslims, Jews, Buddhists, Shintoists, Unitarians, agnostics and atheists from his blessing...The plain message conveyed by the new administration is that Bush's America is a Christian nation, and that non-Christians are welcome into the tent so long as they agree to...

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Improvements Noted in Jewish-Catholic Relations

January 28, 2001

Source: The Denver Post

On January 28, 2001, The Denver Post published an article on the improvement in Jewish-Catholic relations in the past few decades. Rabbi James Rudin thinks that "more good was accomplished in Jewish-Catholic relations in the last 35 years than in the rest of the millennium." He said "most of the movement has come from changes in attitudes by the Roman Catholic Church." There has been "a long line of overtures and apologies made by the Catholic Church in the last three decades of the 20th century." Rudin said such apologies -- for...

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Plans Made to Build Eruv for Jewish Cambridge Residents

January 16, 2001

Source: The Boston Globe

On January 16, 2001, The Boston Globe reported on plans to build an eruv in Cambridge by the summer. "An eruv is a physical entity, an enclosure of walls and fences and plastic wire strung between utility poles." It is "a large, symbolic household. Orthodox Jews, or others who strictly observe the Sabbath, do not 'carry' outside the house between sunset Friday and sunset Saturday, unless they live within an eruv." With an eruv, families can all attend synagogue together and visit friends on their...

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