Saturday, January 28, 2023


Wyatt Earp, a Jew by Burial

It could have been the famous “Gunfight at the Oy Vey Corral,” but history records the shootout between Wyatt Earp and his coterie against the outlaw Clantons as the gunfight at the OK Corral.

None of the participants were Jewish. Not Earp. Not


Bava Batra 118 and 119

May these words of Torah serve as a merit le’iluy nishmat Menachem Mendel ben Harav Yoel David Balk, z”l.


This week we learned Bava Batra 118 and 119. These are some highlights.

Bava Batra 118:


Did Moses Have a Speech Impediment?

Part II

At Exodus 4:10, Moses tells God that he is “chevad peh” and “chevad lashon.” But what exactly do these terms mean? Last week, I discussed the interpretation of Rashi that the “heaviness” idiom implied that Moshe was a stutterer.

How have


Standing for the Aseret HaDibrot? Not at a Sephardic Kehilla!

The Maimon family of Teaneck was celebrating the bar mitzvah of their eldest son on Parshat Yitro of 5763 (2003). A large crowd had gathered, filling the Aviner basement (which housed Shaarei Orah at the time) to beyond capacity. Among the guests was the venerable Rav Solomon Maimon of Seattle, the great-great-uncle of the bar


OHEL OXC Event Raises over $1M


The Lifelong Journey of Refining Our Souls

Part I

In the past few weeks, our parshiot focused on the overarching mandate of “ Kedoshim tihiyu—Thou shalt be holy….” We learn that the challenges inherent in this struggle are due to the conflict we experience between our baser human instincts and


Emotional Memories

This past week I attended the Torah Umesorah convention on Thursday and Friday. As I was driving up to the convention, I was reminded of my trip to the convention last year. In May 2016, I also attended the convention, but had to come home on Thursday night.

As I wrote a few months ago


Our Need For Boundaries

David was known as a charitable, respected and active member of his community. He was out of the house a number of nights each week attending meetings. One night it was the shul, the next it was the school, and on another night he would visit the elderly in the local nursing home. When he was finishing dinner one night, his phone


Bamidbar, Shavuos and Our Personal Megillos

We normally live our days with many small achievements that move us forward. A few times in our lives, not many, we are motivated to demonstrate tremendous passion and invest time and truly hard work in a cause. This combination catapults us forward to open up entirely new possibilities and new worlds that literally change


The Glass Is Half Full

We as a community are justifiably proud of our many day schools, the number of students enrolled, the number who continue on in Israel, and the many young men and women who go on to study in Jewish institutions of higher learning. While we may feel triumphant in our cocoon of insular Orthodoxy,


The Midbar—a Place of Change

Parshat Bamidbar

Sefer Bamidbar, the Book of Numbers, gets its English title from the Greek translation of Chazal’s appellation of the book, Sefer Hapekudim, the Book of Numbers. The opening words of our haftarah, therefore, are quite fitting, as the navi Amos begins with the promise


My Father’s Letters to My Mother From the M/S St. Louis

Part 5—Letter Number Two, Friday May 26, 1939

Translated from the German original

My Dears!

First of all I want to thank you for your telegraphic Yom Tov greetings. I hope, my dears, you spent

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