Archive for October, 2014

Tomorrow: Rabbi Barry Freundel and The Conversion Crisis

October 28, 2014 Leave a comment

Mercaz Fall Semester 14Join me tomorrow night, October 29th at 7 pm, for the launch of the Mercaz Dahan Adult Institute’s Fall Lecture Series as I discuss Rabbi Barry Freundel & The Conversion Crisis. It all takes place at Beth Tfiloh Congregation, 3300 Old Court Road, Baltimore 21208 in the Epstein Chapel.

All are welcome!


SERMON: Do We Have to Wait to “See” to “Believe?”

October 27, 2014 Leave a comment

Of all the Biblical figures, I have always found Noach–or Noah–the most enigmatic. And I don’t say that lightly because I’m not sure what “enigmatic” means! In Brooklyn we never called anyone “enigmatic” … either you were a bum, or you weren’t! So I looked up the meaning of this word “enigmatic” and it is defined as: “difficult to interpret or understand,” “puzzling,” “baffling,” “perplexing.” So, now I can say with full authority: of all the Biblical figures I’ve always found Noach to be the most enigmatic. READ MORE

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Network and explore Israeli business challenges on Nov. 13

October 26, 2014 Leave a comment

Where can you expand your professional network while learning about the rapidly changing Israeli business environment? At BT, of course!

wendyOn November 13th at 8 am, BT is launching its Professional Network with a professional networking breakfast. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear Wendy Coplan Gould, RHIA, Founder and President of HRS, a health records consulting and outsourcing firm. Wendy will describe the strategic challenges her firm has confronted through turbulent economic times compounded by a rapidly changing regulatory environment, which resulted in a vision to expand operations internationally. Her HRS firm established the HRS Coding Academy in Jerusalem, where a group of ultra-Orthodox women enrolled in a rigorous 14-month medical coding course culminating with job offers from HRSIsrael.

This event is FREE for Beth Tfiloh members and school parents; $25 for the general public. RSVP Online:

In the meantime, I invite Beth Tfiloh Congregation members, school parents, faculty/staff (current and past), alumni, alumni parents and alumni spouses to join the Beth Tfiloh Professional Network on LinkedIn. It’s a great way to further your ties and connections to one another and to Beth Tfiloh by creating a supportive business environment for professional growth and advancement!

What’s the future of American Judaism? Find out tomorrow.

October 21, 2014 Leave a comment

WertheimerJackProf. Jack Wertheimer is one of the most noted and important Jewish sociologists in America. His research and writings play an important role in the decision making of the leaders of the American Jewish community. This, despite the fact that he oftentimes disagrees with the leaders! His is a voice that is heard, and I hope you will avail yourselves of the opportunity to hear him on Wednesday evening, October 22 when he will be our guest speaker at the Stanley Z. Penn Memorial Lecture to be held at 7:30 PM in the Beth Tfiloh Rosen Arts Center/Mintzes Theater.

Below are some of his recent writings that will give you a taste of the depth of this man’s understanding of the American Jewish community. The future of the Jewish community in the U.S. is not guaranteed. Come and find out for yourself what are some of the problems, and what are some of the solutions.

Intermarriage: Can Anything Be Done?

Jews and Jewish Birthrate

The Ten Commandments of America’s Jews

Can Modern Orthodoxy Survive?

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SERMON: Mazel tov! Mohammed! It’s a Boy!

October 20, 2014 Leave a comment

It has long been said that “things go better with Coke!” But that is not the way things are these days. For the past 10 years sales of Coca Cola have been on the decline. The name Coca Cola and Coke may be amongst the world’s most famous, but it has not been helping to sell the soda. But this year Coca Cola came up with a new campaign called “Share a Coke”… a campaign that has reversed the decade long decline in U.S. Coca Cola drinking. What did Coca Cola do? It started putting “names” on their bottles: Adam and Eve and Michael and Shawn and Charles … hundreds of different names. And people went out looking to buy a bottle with their own name on it. If they couldn’t find one, they would go to Ebay where a bottle of Coke with their name on the label might sell for as much as $50! The Coke P.R. people are astounded at the success of this merchandising gimmick. But it reminds them – and all of us – how much we connect with our own names, and how important those names are to us. READ MORE

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SERMON: Yom Kippur Yizkor

October 6, 2014 Leave a comment

Before I deliver my sermon, I ask your forgiveness. I ask your forgiveness for the story I am about to tell. The story is inappropriate to tell publicly and even worse for a rabbi to be telling it in a synagogue … worse than that, to be telling it on Yom Kippur–the holiest day of the year. And worst of all to be telling it in these sacred moments before Yizkor. But I have to tell the story because it’s the only way I can fully relate to you my physical condition and state of mind as I am about to celebrate my 70th birthday. READ MORE

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SERMON: Kol Nidre

October 6, 2014 Leave a comment

We have heard enough bad news in the past year, so on this, the holiest night of the year, I bring you good news. Earlier this year the Anti-Defamation League conducted the largest ever world-wide survey of anti-Semitism. The survey covered over 100 countries around the globe containing about 85% of the world’s population. According to the results of the survey, 26% – or a little over one billion people in this world – have anti-Semitic attitudes. That’s the good news! What makes this news good are several factors: it’s only 26% … it’s only one billion people! But there was something else about the survey that, for me, was really good news. Of those one billion with anti-Semitic beliefs, 70% had never actually met a Jew! In Spain, for example, a country filled with anti-Semites, 20% of them could not even give a reason why they hate Jews! For me, all this was great news. READ MORE