17 Tammuz and Ahavas Yisroel

Today is the fast day of the 17th of Tammuz, the beginning of a Jewish holiday called "The Three Weeks."  To make a long story short, in most cases if something bad was meant to happen to the Jewish people, it would happen during these three weeks, culminating in Tisha B'Av, a major fast day … Continue reading 17 Tammuz and Ahavas Yisroel

The Fast that Begins the Three Weeks

I write today because I don't know if I will tomorrow I know my mind will slow the words will crawl from my lips slowly, with effort dragging each thought behind them on a back bent and weary On fast days, I drift from this world closer to another, my mind stilled my focus blurred … Continue reading The Fast that Begins the Three Weeks

This Week’s Parsha – Pinchas – A Tale of Two Sets of Daughters

This week's parsha has always been one I've stumbled over.  I know I'm supposed to revile the Moabite women who seduce the Israelites and cheer on Pinchas as he becomes a righteous zealot, skewering one of them and Zimri, gaining his descendants the priesthood.  Still, just something seems off about it, particularly as it comes … Continue reading This Week’s Parsha – Pinchas – A Tale of Two Sets of Daughters

Common Conversion Candidate Blunders…and How to Avoid Them!

In the years I've been in process I've been privileged to be in contact with a lot of other conversion candidates as well as interact with a few in person.  It occurred to me recently that I've seen a lot of common mistakes by those just starting out that could be avoided if they had … Continue reading Common Conversion Candidate Blunders…and How to Avoid Them!

First Bris

This has already been a year of firsts for our family.  We were invited to our first Passover Seder and, last evening, we attended our first Bris. For many years, lifecycle events were something that happened around us, but we weren't invited.  The primary reason was that there are some communities in which the custom … Continue reading First Bris

Praying at the Edge of the World

My lips form the words of songs suited to warm Mediterranean waters As the cold arctic seas lap at my boots My eyes do not face olive groves they take in the expanse of glaciers, snow capped mountains Bald eagles watch me, warily My lips sing of Zion and Jerusalem only heard by a few … Continue reading Praying at the Edge of the World