Raising Jewish Boys? Need Some Help?

I received the following email from a fellow blogger about an interesting and informative webinar that will be held the next few Sunday evenings. (I am not sure if the time is Israel or American time) If you are raising teenage boys it may be of interest:

Rabbi Doctor Abraham Twerski, Dr. David Pelcovitz and Rabbi Dr. Benzion Sorotozkin will be featured in an educational webinar series starting this Sunday at 8pm and continuing for 3 consecutive Sundays. Parents and educators can gain keen insights from some of the leading experts in the religious Jewish community.

You can register and watch the webinar series at (kesher Israel dot com)  http://www.kesherisrael.com/webinar. The webinar focuses particular attention on factors that may influence the decision to choose a post high school Yeshiva in Israel.

The first webinar on June 9 examines issues related to teenage boys who are off the derech as well as the far more common situation of being apathetic to Judaism. The second seminar on June 16th deals with behavioral issues and the concluding seminar on June 23rd tackles issues of substance abuse. See the poster at http://kesherisrael.com/email/webinar/index.html

Questions and comments can be emailed to webinar@kehserisrael.com. Kesher promises that someone from its professional staff will respond within 2 working days.

For more information and to sign up visit  http://kesherisrael.com/email/webinar/index.html

Yoni Mozeson

Marketing to the Jewish Community



Showing Respect for Old Holy Books

Jewish law has a solution for (almost) everything, and one can learn a lot about Jewish values from it. We learn what to cherish and what to avoid, and how not only to act but how we should think about the world.

One of the earliest things Orthodox Jews learn in childhood is that if we drop a siddur (prayerbook) or a chumash (a Jewish bible) we need to pick it up and give it a kiss. This teaches us at a very early age to not only treat our sifrei kodesh (holy books) with reverence but also with love. As a child gets older and can understand more, we teach him other laws regarding sifrei kodesh including the fact that you must not sit next to a sefer kodesh (you should either hold it in your hands or lap or put it onto a table). If a sefer Torah is dropped during the services in the synagogue, the people present at the time must fast.

When old sifrei kodesh are beyond use, we don’t throw them away or burn them, G-d forbid – we bury them. (This is why when the Nazis burned our Sifrei Torah and sifrei kodesh it hurt so much. We mourn much more than the loss of property – we mourn something much more precious).

The issue of burying old sifrei kodesh is the subject of this article in the Times of Israel. It seems that the problem of what to do with obsolete siddurim and machzorim (regular prayerbooks and special ones for the High Holy Days) has been exacerbated recently since every major denomination of Jewry in America has published a new version of their siddurim in the past few years.

I recently bought a new Koren siddur for myself, after using the Artscroll siddur for the past thirty years or so, since I became Orthodox. As you can imagine there were pages starting to come out of the old siddur. It still sits on our bookshelf. I don’t have the heart to put it into geniza (special storage for books before they are buried).  I know I will need to someday, but not yet.