What Jewish College Students Can Learn from Their Hometown Congregations October 16, 2015

"...What I experienced that evening though was beyond expectation – it changed my own preconceived notions of what it meant to be part of a local Jewish congregation in New England.

Brad Hirschfield on Steve Malzberg about Violence in Jerusalem October 15, 2015

Steve Malzberg speaks with Brad Hirschfield and Adam Thompson, Criminal Defense Attorney, about the Democratic Debate and about the situation in Israel. Commenting from Israel, Brad Hirschfield says that these are very difficult times. The US administration stating that blame, evenhandedly, goes to both Israelis and Palestinians for the current violence, "when clearly Jews are being stabbed in the streets is obscence."

An Alternative Statement on Jewish Vitality: The Future is Bright October 15, 2015

From Rabbis Irwin Kula and Brad Hirschfield: This is a very important article by Rabbi Rebecca Sirbu Director of Rabbis Without Borders. There is a very serious debate about the future of American Jewish life transpiring in leadership circles in the organized Jewish community that has profound policy implications.

Rabbis Without Borders in the Field: I'm Too Broken to Write This Blog October 12, 2015

"He was tense and almost trembling as he told us about being attacked by a stone–yielding mob of 30 angry young men. Only by a miracle did none of the rocks smash through the windshield of the car. And then shots were fired. A bullet whizzed by his ear and lodged in the doorframe of the car. Deeply shaken but unharmed, he sped up and drove just a hundred meters ahead to an army checkpoint...."

Brad Hirschfield on California Governor Jerry Brown's End of Life Option Act October 9, 2015

This week, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law ABX2 15, also known as the End of Life Option Act, which allows physicians to prescribe lethal doses of drugs to terminally ill patients who want to hasten their death. Some critics of the controversial law claim that “we are playing God.” According to Rabbi Brad Hirschfield, we are always playing God, in fact “we are here to imitate God.”

From Odyssey Networks’ FAITH ON THE RECORD

Rabbis Without Borders in the Field: There's No Such Thing as Closure October 8, 2015

"There is a relationship in my life that has gnawed at my heartstrings for more than twenty years, and each year, during the Days of Awe, I do what I can to bring it to closure, internal closure, quieting the triggers, accepting desire unmet, forgiving the action and inaction that causes me pain. I let go and let go again in a conscious process of coming into equilibrium. And, annually, I am quieter in this season, accepting of a certain failure, ok with regret, ok with a particular sadness, a particular loneliness.

The Wisdom Daily: Praying Into the Void for a Connection October 7, 2015

"...after reading this devastatingly beautiful ‘Missed Connection’ recently, I'm reminded once again that the mere act of bravely setting our prayers free – into the void – can be just as beneficial to our souls as the actual thing we're asking for. The Craigslist poster, unidentified thus far, reaches into the virtual abyss to connect with someone he met 43 years ago.

The Wisdom Daily: Who Would You Wish to Spend One Last Day With? October 6, 2015

"If there were any person in your life, living or dead, with whom you could spend one last day, who would it be? And how would you spend that day? No, I'm not stealing this question from college applications. I'm feeling the pain of the mass murder at Umpqua Community College in Oregon and the killings of Eitam and Na'ama Henkin in Israel. The deep desire to hold close those I love is definitely part of my response...."

Rabbis Without Borders in the Field: Five Stages of Soul October 5, 2015

"The Torah begins with the birth of the world. It ends with the death of Moshe (Moses). Between these two bookends, the Torah’s story unfolds. Explicitly, it’s the story of the early Israelite community. Implicitly, it’s also the story of a typical human developmental journey...."

Brad Hirschfield on A Wedding Made Unforgettable by Dad’s Decision October 2, 2015

At Brittany Peck's wedding in Ohio last month, she reportedly worried about who should walk her down the aisle. Putting her feelings first, her father surprised guests when he reached a hand out to Brittany's stepfather, pulled him from his seat, put their animosity aside and insisted that he participate in the bride's entrance. The wedding photos taken by Delia Blackburn have gone viral, and it's clear why according to Brad Hirschfield: "There are probably more good partners in our lives than we realize [and] the kind of love and open-hearted honesty that led to that moment? We all need more of it."

From Odyssey Networks’ FAITH ON THE RECORD

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