Religion & Beliefs

Jews in the News: A Weekly Roundup

With Passover lurking just around the corner, the wires are buzzing with seder stories: This year the Boston marathon falls on Passover, so Jewish runners who are accustomed to a carbo-loading with pasta and bread the night before are seeking … Read More

By / April 11, 2008

With Passover lurking just around the corner, the wires are buzzing with seder stories:

  • This year the Boston marathon falls on Passover, so Jewish runners who are accustomed to a carbo-loading with pasta and bread the night before are seeking out kosher-for-Passover alternatives like potatoes. Might we suggest matzo balls?
  • Rabbis from the Jewish Outreach Institute want people to watch their mouths this Passover–and not just in regards to chametz. They're calling for us all to eliminate bigoted and negative speech from our seders.
  • In Huntsville, Alabama, more than 1300 Christians of all denominations will come together for an annual seder called Christ Our Passover. This year they’re presenting a $10,000 check to the Jewish Federation of Huntsville and North Alabama, but some of the Jews in the community feel like they’re being bought by the goyim.
  • In non-Passover related news, the Prayer for Israel, first published by Israel’s chief rabbinate just after the founding of the State, is now being called into question by a number of unaffiliated synagogues and minyans. They object to the way it implies that the creation of a Jewish state is the dawn of the messianic age, and some have written alternative prayers in response, or eliminated the Prayer for Israel from their liturgy altogether.
  • Israeli Rabbi Elior Chen, who is being charged with several counts of child abuse, seems to have fled to Canada. He’s hiding from the Israeli police and government, which is working on extradition proceedings in connection with severe abuse charges regarding children as young as three and four. The children were reportedly beaten with hammers and knives, and one sustained permanent brain damage. Chen is allegedly an advocate of disciplining children via abuse, and police found journals detailing specific and systematic ways to abuse his children left as instructions for his wife while he was away raising money. The Canadian government won’t confirm whether or not they are working with the Israelis on the extradition.
  • The Orthodox Union sponsored a fair to showcase Orthodox communities all over the country that are cheaper and more livable than New York. Frum couples struggling to find affordable housing and education for their families were encouraged to consider cities like Memphis, Denver, and New Orleans. The kosher catch 22: There aren't nearly as many kosher restaurants when you leave the tri-state area, but most people can only afford to eat in kosher restaurants if they're not paying New York rents.
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