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e-newsletter August 5, 2008

Table of Contents

Ask your friends to subscribe to our eNewsletter--the more people we reach, the better!

Ways You Can Get Involved

Looking for a rabbi or cantor for your interfaith wedding? We have a database of more than 170 rabbis and cantors throughout the U.S. and Canada.

If what we do helps you or others you care about, please make a tax-deductible charitable contribution in support of our work.

Connections In Your Area--Featured Events

Why Do It Alone?

Mother's Circle Groups starting Aug. 10, 1 p.m. We provide support for moms raising Jewish children who aren't Jewish themselves. Contact Mother's Circle Atlanta for more information.



August 5, 2008

Dear Friend,

It's glorious summer, a perfect time to hang out with your family, to lean back and reflect on life's deep questions, to swim and to read big important books at the beach. We have articles on all of those things. You can always find a list of our most recent content at: /recent.


"Why does challah have raisins in it? Why doesn't Daddy like raisins? Is it because Daddy isn't Jewish? Do only Jewish people like raisins?" Alina Adams writes on preschool parenting in And A Child Shall Nag Them Into It.

Her parents were coming to visit for a month, and she hadn't spent such a long stretch of time with them since she was 18. Lynn Melnick read the new book by Ruth Nemzoff on parenting adults straight through and reviewed it in Letting Go Of The Dreams, Talking About The Realities.

Baby Naming Ceremonies

In To Bris Or Not To Bris, Rabbi Stephen Carr Reuben gives interfaith couples advice on how to make what may be a tough decision. Check out the third post in our video blog, Rabbi Reuben's Ruminations, presented in cooperation with the Jewish TV Network.

  Alx Block and Lula Jones were in that situation when they were expecting. They created a beautiful multicultural baby naming ceremony. Alx wrote about it in Whose Ceremony Is It, Anyway? Lula discussed how they made their decisions in her article, The Bottom Line. (That's their son, Raiden, in the photo at left. Mazel tov!)

Spiritual Journeys

Larry Rosenwald wasn't raised with much Jewish education. He had to figure how to be Jewish, and how to teach his daughters Judaism, through discussions with his Quaker wife, as he writes in Spirituality and Shishkabobs: A Jewish Journey Through Dialogue.

In 1995 an article about the biblical concept of ger toshav, "resident stranger," revolutionized my own thinking about non-Jews in Jewish communities. Has the concept changed how Jewish communities interact with non-Jews?  I wrote about the state of ger toshav today with reporting by Molly Parr in Welcoming The Stranger? Or Just Welcoming?  


Can History and Scripture Repair Jewish-Muslim Relations? Menachem Wecker reviews a new book about Islam for Jews.

Arts and Entertainment

This week, some excellent sun and fun with Jews in sports, as Nate Bloom introduces us to Interfaith Celebrities: Beijing Bound. The photo at left is of swimming sensation Dara Torres.

He's a killer athlete with a laid-back attitude--Lindsey Silken was just Shmoozin with Makua Kai Rothman, A Jewish Hawaiian Professional Surfer.

What's New on the Blogs

Micah Sachs wrote on the Jewish Outreach Institute's newest outreach tool, a business-card sized glossary to common Jewish terms in "Code" Read. I reflected on the recent shooting in a Unitarian Universalist Church in Knoxville in Sometimes when something feels familiar, it’s not good and Micah discussed A Jewish Children’s Museum.

We'd love to hear from you--join the discussions on our discussion boards or by posting a comment on an article.



Ruth Abrams, Managing Editor

Write for Us!

We're looking for writers on the following topics:

  • Grandparenting--non-Jewish grandparents of Jewish children?
  • Jewish names: do you have one? 
  • Teens from interfaith families
  • Talking about God with your children
  • Hebrew school

Interested in any of these topics? Contact us at | P.O. Box 428, Newton, MA 02464 | 617 581 6860 |

Hebrew and Yiddish for "good luck," a phrase used to express congratulations for happy and significant occasions. A member of the Jewish clergy who leads a congregation in songful prayer. ("Hazzan" in Hebrew.) A language of West Semitic origins, culturally considered to be the language of the Jewish people. Ancient or Classical Hebrew is the language of Jewish prayer or study. Modern Hebrew was developed in the late-19th and early 20th centuries as a revival language; today it is spoken by most Israelis.
Hebrew for "my master," the term refers to a spiritual leader and teacher of Torah. Often, but not always, a rabbi is the leader of a synagogue congregation.
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