Public affairs body calls for more funding

The message from the Jewish Council for Public Affairs at its annual conference Sunday was simple: For Jews to fight the spread of anti-Semitism, they need to invest in munity relations. Leaders in the Jewish public affairs world called for a bigger investment from Jews across the country to bat anti-Semitism wherever it appears. What… Read More

Write every day, and other tips for budding genealogists

Bob Schnapp had gathered so much historical information on his family that he thought he had a book in the making. Then he got stuck.I haven’t looked at it in about two years now,” said the Reston resident. That’s why he came to the workshop on writing and self-publishing a family history, sponsored by the… Read More

Magen David search for new rabbi continues

Magen David Sephardic Congregation, in North Bethesda, is still searching for a new rabbi, after Rabbi Haim Ovadia left in July 2018. The Washington area’s only Sephardic congregation faces a unique challenge, according to Debbie Shemony, the congregation’s recording secretary. “[We want] a Sephardic rabbi or a rabbi with Sephardic leanings,” she said. “[But] There… Read More

Ex-Tree of Life rabbi: ‘I knew where everybody would be’

Pittsburgh Rabbi Chuck Diamond remembers where he was on the morning of Oct. 27, 2018. It was around 10 when his phone began to ring at home. “I usually don’t answer the phone on Shabbat but I saw who it was. It was a congregant of mine and I answered the phone. He said, ‘Did… Read More

Adas Israel reopens mikvah with stories

It was an emotional night for members of Adas Israel Congregation attending the rededication of the synagogue’s mikvah, or ritual bath. Five members of the 250 people in attendance on Jan. 30, talked about how the mikvah had altered their lives. Julia Pinkin-Schantz told about how she entered the mikvah after her father and son… Read More

Meet the father of drinkable kosher wine

Pierre Miodownick, a Frenchman turned-Israeli winemaker of seemingly indefatigable energy, is one of the early quality kosher wine pioneers. Miodownick, 65, fell in love with wine at an early age. His family “was not religious,” he told me in his heavily accented English, but “wine was on the table at every meal” and, really, was… Read More

NoVa congregation investing in Jewish values

Beth El Hebrew Congregation in Alexandria has bee the first congregational investor in a new “socially responsible” fund offered by the Reform Pension Board, a nonprofit that offers pension funds and other investments for the Reform movement’s clergy and staff. In December, Beth El’s independently run Permanent Endowment Fund, which raises money for capital improvements… Read More

After study, NoVa’s year in the spotlight

A year after a demographic study of the Washington region’s Jewish munity revealed that the largest segment of the Jewish population lives in Northern Virginia, institutions there are hoping that with more attention es more funding. “There’s a groundswell of excitement and activity around the opportunities that were illuminated in the munity study,” said Jeff… Read More

Steinlauf tapped as Kol Shalom rabbi

Rabbi Gil Steinlauf, who stepped down as rabbi of Adas Israel Congregation in 2017, was tapped on Feb. 1 to lead Kol Shalom in Rockville beginning in July. He will succeed Rabbi Jonathan Maltzman, who is retiring and will bee rabbi emeritus. A vote by the 250-family congregation a few weeks ago supported hiring Steinlauf… Read More

Does Instagram make challah more delicious?

  NEW YORK — Mandy Silverman remembers being scared of the kitchen as a child. “There was a constant joke in my house growing up that I would mess up instant iced tea,” she recalled in a phone interview last month. But a quick glance at her Instagram feed reveals how things have changed. Her… Read More

Author Mnookin widens big tent

It’s big-tent Jewish identity on steroids. To help assure the continuation of the non-Orthodox Jewish munity in America, Harvard law professor Robert H. Mnookin advocates accepting as part of the American Jewish munity “anyone who wishes to identify as Jewish, no matter how many Jewish parents he has.” This does not require formal religious conversion,… Read More

Israelis here to promote Israeli Arabs in high-tech

Some 20 percent of Israel’s 8 million people are Arabs. But they constitute only 3 percent of the country’s high-tech industry employees. That’s according to Sami Saadi and Paz Hirschmann, co-CEOs of Tsofen, a joint Arab and Jewish nonprofit that promotes high-tech in the Israeli Arab munity to encourage economic development and the creation of… Read More