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Articles written by Ben Harris

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 By Ben Harris    News    April 10, 2020 

Rabbi who recovered contributes to treatment experiment

(JTA)—Among the mysteries of the coronavirus is that some patients suffer and ultimately die from the disease while others experience the symptoms as akin to a mild cold. Rabbi Daniel Nevins is in the latter category. The dean of the rabbinical...

 
 By Ben Harris    News    April 3, 2020

Passover and coronavirus: cancellations mount at kosher resorts

NEW YORK (JTA)-For the past three years, Esther Possick has avoided the hassle of hosting Passover at her Long Island home by traveling to kosher hotels in foreign locales. In 2017, she spent the...

 
 By Ben Harris    News    March 27, 2020

Conservative movement leaders say virtual minyans are permissible during 'crisis situation'

(JTA)—The leaders of the Conservative movement’s Jewish law committee issued a crisis declaration allowing the recitation of the Mourner’s Kaddish with a virtual online prayer quorum. In a statement issued this week, Rabbis Elliot Dorff and...

 

Thousands of Israelis in the US called home as coronavirus restrictions tighten in their homeland

NEW YORK (JTA)—Purim celebrations at Oakland Hebrew Day School on Tuesday included a surprise, un-festive addition: farewells to two young Israeli women whose work in the Northern California school was being cut short by the global coronavirus...

 
 By Ben Harris    News    November 15, 2019

5 innovative ways Jewish day schools are reducing tuition costs

Ask any parent of Jewish day school students about the biggest challenge they face in providing a solid Jewish education for their kids: Chances are they’ll talk about tuition. At some schools in the New York-New Jersey area, where most U.S. Jewish...

 
 By Ben Harris    Features    July 26, 2019

Alumni of these Jewish summer camps are making aliyah in droves

Every Friday, the staff and campers at Camp Ramah Nyack gather for a ceremony called Shishi Al Hamigrash-Hebrew for "Friday on the field." The entire camp community, some 1,100 people in all,...

 

The Jewish year in review: #MeToo, the embassy move, and a growing gap between Israel and the Diaspora

(JTA)-For North American Jews, the Jewish year 5778 began with tensions between Israel and the Diaspora over egalitarian prayer at the Western Wall and ended with more tension over a controversial...

 
 By Ben Harris    Features    June 29, 2018

How day schools are making Jewish learning fun

The first time Rabbi Raphael Karlin gave his sixth-grade students a Talmud game, it didn't turn out quite the way he expected. The challenge was to take a passage of Talmud cut up into six parts and...

 
 By Ben Harris    Features    May 11, 2018

These Jewish day schools are breaking the mold to teach fluent Hebrew

Teaching students Hebrew is a top priority for the Chicago-area day school Hillel Torah. So to ensure it has a ready supply of native Hebrew speakers on its faculty, the school goes straight to the so...

 
 By Ben Harris    Features    May 4, 2018

A Montreal pilgrimage in the footsteps of Leonard Cohen

MONTREAL (JTA)-Just inside the gate of the Shaar Hashomayim synagogue off Boulevard du Mont Royal, a gravestone bears an unusual Star of David, the sharp angles of its two opposing triangles-one...

 

For student with unique circumstances, new Jewish two-year college program is a godsend

NEW YORK-Yechiel Malik was born and raised an hour's drive from New York City, but until age 10 he spoke only Yiddish. He grew up in an all-Hasidic village in New York's Hudson Valley, and for most...

 

Winter camping and fighting addiction at America's first Jewish wilderness therapy program

When Jory Hanselman was a high school student, she found herself struggling on multiple fronts. A family member was wrestling with addiction and mental illness. And two friends died suddenly, one...

 

Looking back at 5776

(JTA)-A stabbing and car-ramming epidemic in Israel that some called a third intifada was among the most dominant Jewish stories of the past year. But 5776 was also notable for the release of spy...

 
 By Ben Harris    News    December 18, 2015

Itzhak Perlman named winner of 2016 Genesis Prize

(JTA)-Itzhak Perlman, the Israeli-born violin virtuoso, was named the third winner of the Genesis Prize. Perlman was named the winner on Monday of the annual $1 million prize that has been dubbed the...

 
 By Ben Harris    News    April 17, 2015

U.S. and Israel escalate war of words over Iran

By (JTA)-Israel and the Obama administration have stepped up their war of words over the framework agreement that aims to limit Iran's nuclear activities in exchange for a gradual rollback of...

 
 By Ben Harris    Features    July 11, 2014

Zalman Schachter-Shalomi brought old world gravitas to New Age Judaism

(JTA) - Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi was one of the world's most innovative and influential Jewish spiritual leaders. To his followers, he was their Hasidic rebbe. But what other rebbe had dropped...

 
 By Ben Harris    Features    May 17, 2013

Philanthropist Taube wants Polish Jewry remembered for life, not death

By Ben Harris NEW YORK (JTA)—When the Museum of the History of the Polish Jews opened its doors to the public recently after years of delays and tens of millions of dollars in spending, it was in...

 
 By Ben Harris    News    April 26, 2013

Deception deals blow to reputation of prominent Orthodox rabbi, Michael Broyde

NEW YORK (JTA)—Until [two weeks ago], Michael Broyde was considered one of the most respected Orthodox rabbis in America. A professor of law at Emory University, the author of dozens of books and articles, and a leading authority on the...

 

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