Articles written by Deborah Fineblum

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Nefesh B'Nefesh launches new institute for aliyah and strategy

(JNS) - It's been three years since Hanna and Shamshy Schlager traded their home in New York for a new one in Modi'in, Israel. It's been a good three years, they'll tell you, a time of growth, not...

 By Deborah Fineblum    News    June 18, 2021

After a year away, Birthright returns to Israel at a critical time

(JNS) - They're baaaaack! If you're in Israel this month, you can't miss the clusters of them downing falafel on Jerusalem's Ben-Yehuda Street, cooling off in the Dead Sea, climbing Masada at sunrise...


Knowledge is power against hate: Course designed to set Holocaust record straight

(JNS) - Anyone who still believes that ignorance is bliss hasn't seen how easily it can be turned into hate. Nov. 9 marked 82 years since Kristallnacht, "the Night of Broken Glass." A night when...


With HIAS changing longtime focus, supporters question some of its priorities

(JNS) - The Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, better known as HIAS, was for the better part of a century responsible for helping settle generations of Jewish refugees in their new homes in the United...


Online Judaism: A parents' guide on engaging Jewishly in the time of corona

(JNS)-It wasn't so long ago when life was so over-the-top busy that you longed for some quiet unstructured time with your children. The coronavirus pandemic has granted that wish. And then some. With... Full story


What makes Israel the 13th happiest country in the world?

(JNS)-"Happy are those who dwell in Your house."-Psalm 84 It's official. Israel has been named the 13th happiest country in the world. So says the 2019 United Nations World Happiness Report, which... Full story


Saluting one of the last living heroes of Israel's fight for independence

(JNS)-Nothing really prepares you for the Smoky smile and the twinkle in an eye undimmed by nearly a century on earth. And when Harold "Smoky" Simon grins at you, it's hard to remember that, at 99, th... Full story


A land where the Bible serves as a tour guide's GPS

(JNS)-When you visit Nachal Prat, you can almost feel what it was like to be a seventh-century Israelite leading your donkey, its saddle bags full of water, to Jerusalem. Nachal Prat, often referred... Full story


Love letters of the Shoah: Messages thrown from cattle cars convey final wishes, prayers, blessings

(JNS)-Jews have long been known as the people of the book, but fresh evidence has emerged that they're also the people of the letter. Of the millions of Jews who were taken to their deaths during the... Full story


Real Israel: New book brings the 'aliyah' experience home

(JNS)-You'll laugh. You'll cry. You'll feel what it's like to breathe the air of Israel on a daily basis. You'll also see this tiny sliver of land through the eyes of the 51 olim (new immigrant)... Full story


The Chanukah connection: Sharing the light with far-away family

(JNS)—For generations, lighting the Chanukah candles together has been the stuff that makes lifelong memories. But today’s far-flung families are increasingly challenged to share the sight of the can... Full story


Seventy years of sacrifice: A global salute to Israel's fallen soldiers

(JNS)-If you've ever been in Israel for Yom Hazikaron-the Memorial Day for those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for the Jewish homeland-chances are you will never forget it. Even if you somehow miss... Full story


From generation to generation, Jews celebrate the gift of freedom at Passover time

(JNS)-Passover is called the holiday of freedom for good reason. Every year for the last 3,000 or so years-wherever we are and in whatever form of bondage we find ourselves-we manage to celebrate our... Full story


Stump the seder guests: A mystery for each day of the holiday

(JNS)-Why is this year going to be different from all other years? Because this year, you can stump your guests with the meaning behind many of the mysterious rites that comprise the Passover seder. L... Full story


Jerusalem takes center stage as movement opposes US policy shift

BOSTON-Rabbi Rick Jacobs used his pulpit to compare the difficulties between Israel and Reform Jews to those of Joseph and his brothers in last week's Torah portion of Vayeshev. It was a huge... Full story


Love letters of the Holocaust

This is a story about the power of letters to span both years and miles, and to unite the hearts of children and their parents when powers they can't control force them apart. More than a dozen years... Full story


New Bible translation speaks an eternal language: the land and people of Israel

With the publication of a new edition of the Hebrew Bible under his belt, Rabbi Naphtali (Tuly) Weisz is set to manifest his vision for honoring and nurturing evangelical Christian support for Jews... Full story


Palestinian terror has Israel's rabbis searching for solutions

Their pictures and their names are burned on our hearts-victims of terrorism whose final moments we can't even imagine. It's in precisely these times that the job of spiritual leaders is both most... Full story


For happy hikers, Israel's 620-mile national trail brings Jewish history to life

It was a brave-some may argue foolhardy-lot who recently braved the August heat of the Negev desert to walk a short segment of the Israel National Trail (INT) at around noontime. But the nearly 100... Full story


Elvis lives-at Israeli restaurant and gas station

To appreciate how much Israelis love Elvis Presley, you just have to hear three generations of the Mizrachi family of Rehovot crooning, "Wise men say only fools rush in...but I can't help falling in... Full story


After losing his legs, U.S. veteran Brian Mast gets his 'hands dirty' to support Israel

Never in the 23 years of Natan Glassman's volunteering at an Israel Defense Forces army base has he seen anything like the outpouring of love and respect garnered by American veteran Brian Mast.... Full story


To pray or not to pray: that is the Temple Mount question

There are few subjects in Israel these days that arouse greater passion than prayer rights at the Temple Mount. The dramatic uptick in Palestinian terror attacks on Jews in Jerusalem in recent weeks, including Tuesday’s killing of four at a s... Full story


Jewish women try to make sense of mikveh maelstrom

Among the things that Jewish women value most about the mikveh (ritual bath) experience is the feeling of seclusion, sanctity, and safety. "But the need to feel respected and comfortable is the most... Full story


Ammunition Hill once again a Jerusalem battleground

JERUSALEM-As the afternoon sun showers Jerusalem with gold, Ammunition Hill looks like any of the city's other 22 light rail stops. Since 2011, untold numbers of Israelis-Jews, Muslims, and... Full story


Sleepless in Israel: Shavuot all-nighter comes to life in the Jewish state

Regarding Shavuot-when Jews from around the world celebrate the receiving of the Torah at Mount Sinai-Rabbi Chayim Vital wrote on behalf of his master Rabbi Isaac Ben Solomon Luria ("Ha'Ari), "Know... Full story


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