Friday, September 17, 2021


Passaic Pillar, Rabbi Heshie Hirth, z”l

Rabbi Heshie Hirth passed away on Shabbat Shuva, September 11, after being in a coma since suffering a stroke during heart surgery in the early months of 2020.

Rabbi Hirth established the Yeshiva K’tana of Passaic in 1987, which started with an initial class of 50 students. He served


Palestinians: Why Biden’s Aid Will Not Bring Peace

As the Biden administration steps up its efforts to bolster the Palestinian Authority (PA), Palestinians seem to be increasingly losing faith in their leaders.

The Palestinian public also appears to be losing faith in any peace process with Israel. Many are even saying that they support the annulment of


Teaneck Man Smashes Glass at Medical Office ‘Looking for Jews’: Not Charged With Bias

When Jill Gordon took her 10-year-old daughter to the doctor in Teaneck on Sept. 12 for a stomach problem, she never expected for them to end up cowering in the bathroom to protect themselves from an antisemitic attacker.

The pair were already in the bathroom at Riverside Pediatrics in Teaneck


GBDS: 36 Years of Academic Excellence

On August 30, Academies at GBDS welcomed back its students for a new year at school. This school year marks Academies at GBDS’s 36th anniversary, a milestone that is not only a blessing, but also a reminder of the perseverance of the Jewish people and the role that Jewish education has in the future of


Let My Teaching Drop as Rain

In the glorious song with which Moses addresses the congregation, he invites the people to think of the Torah—their covenant with God—as if it were like the rain that waters the ground so that it brings forth its produce:

Let my teaching drop as rain,



Zemirot and Divrei Torah at Every Shabbat And Yom Tov Meal: My 5782 Improvement

A Jewish Table vs. Achashverosh’s Table

If you are like me, sometimes you neglect to sing zemirot and include a dvar Torah at Shabbat and Yom Tov meals. While we have a long list of excuses, I, for one, am resolving this Tishrei season to put an end to this bad habit. The following


Rabanan Devei Rav: Beitza 19a

On Beitza 19a, Rava encounters a group of talmidei chachamim, namely the “rabbanan devei Rav,” interpreting a troublesome brayta detailing a dispute between a tanna kamma and Rabbi Shimon Shezuri. The tanna kamma says that if a vessel was ritually impure before Yom Tov, one may not immerse it during twilight. One may not immerse this


David Avdecha

Parashat Ha’azinu

The haftarah that we read this Shabbat is one that is not read every year, but only when there is a Shabbat between Yom Kippur and Sukkot, i.e., when Parashat Ha’azinu is not read on Shabbat Shuva. This year, therefore, I have the opportunity to share some thoughts about this


Praying for a Good Allocation on Sukkot

What does a speaker do when he wants to get the attention of an audience that’s not so interested? A few years ago, New Jersey State Assemblyman Gary Schaer was addressing some wealthy real estate investors. When he got up to speak, some were talking while others were looking at their phones. Their actions were saying, “Who is this


Sukkot: Divine Hashgacha During a ‘Random’ Epidemic

Jewish holidays celebrate framing moments of national destiny. Pesach recalls our liberation from Egypt while Shavuot re-dramatizes our selection at Sinai. By contrast, the holiday of Sukkot is more internationally flavored. Similar to Pesach and Shavuot, it is tagged to a national memory—Divine protection of the Jewish desert


Mirrors and Windows: The Secret of Sukkot

A father set out one day to teach his young daughter a powerful lesson. When she woke up in the morning he took her in front of a mirror and asked her, “What do you see?”

She smiled and answered, “I see myself!”

He then took her to the window, and asked her,


Taking the Sukkah Along

The commandment to sit in the sukkah is rather unusual. We fulfill the mitzvah of “You shall live in the sukkah for seven days” (Vayikra 23:42) by simply eating meals and sleeping in the sukkah. Since when is sleeping a mitzvah? Sleeping is a lack of consciousness; a necessary prerequisite to serving God, certainly, but a mitzvah? And

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