Rabbi Nathan Laufer, President Emeritus of The Wexner Foundation, shared that his father, Max Laufer, a survivor of the Nazi concentration camps who rebuilt his life in the United States after World War II, passed away recently at the age of 93. He was buried in Petach Tikvah, Israel, his home for the past 14 years. In addition to Rabbi Laufer, he leaves behind a daughter, eight grandchildren and 13

Know where you came from and where you are going. Words that penetrate the heart. Recently these words got a special meaning in my Mum and Dad’s home. One moment before it’s too late, thanks to my Or’s wonderful initiation, we held a living room memorial, or to be precise – in the garden. My father, Danny Labanovsky and his “trouble club mate” Danny Chanoch, shared their personal story and

Back row L to R:   Jill Deutch (WGF 2), Ari Gauss (WGF 13), Seth Goren (WGF 16), Charlie Schwartz (WGF 18), Dan Ross (WGF 27), Carine Warsawski (WGF 27), Mark Young (WFF 1), Aaron Lerner (WGF 22), Megan GoldMarche (WGF 22), Adena Kirstein (WGF 19)   Front row L to R Esther Reed (WGF 9), Isabel de Koninck (WGF 17), Michelle Fisher (WGF 10), Sarita Bronstein (WHP, Palo Alto

Pictured above is Rabbi Elyse Goldstein leading Wexner Alumni from Montreal in an engaging discussion.  The Montreal Alumni of the Wexner Heritage Program were fortunate to participate in an early morning lecture by Rabbi Elyse Goldstein at the home of Julie Shugarman and Ilan Gewurz. Rabbi Goldstein is teaching the current Montreal Group sacred texts. Rabbi Goldstein’s lecture was titled “Women are From Genesis, Men are from Leviticus: Seeing Torah

“Kol Israel arevim ze bazeh” (All Israel is responsible for one another).  In an effort to re-home a Torah from a recently shuttered synagogue in Iowa to a new minyan in Paraguay, we used our networks to get the Torah scroll part of the way (Katie especially due to her childhood connections in Kansas City). A congregation in Ottumwa, Iowa, B’nai Jacob, was looking for egalitarian communities in need of Torah

In the spirit of the Valentine’s Day, I wanted to share a story from my clinical practice as a cardiologist.  I have changed the names and places for obvious reasons. I recently read an article by Stacey Goldman called Spirit of the Laws.  I was inspired by her conclusion: “Is it possible to view every encounter with another Jew as an opportunity to strengthen our unity as a people and

Reposted with thanks to huffingtonpost.ca Gretchen Carlson, whose sexual harassment claims led to Roger Ailes’s downfall, recently stated that “the culture of concealment and denial is coming to an end” and the Silence Breakers were just named Time Magazine’s Person of the Year. But a culture of silence does not simply end when its victims are ready to speak up.  For victims to be heard, we must understand what role we play in

The views expressed in this blog does not necessarily reflect those of The Wexner Foundation. Poland is complicated.  Since returning from a week in and around Warsaw and Krakow last summer, I’ve found that I can’t describe the trip without first establishing this basic fact. A few months ago, I was among eight Jewish leaders from Phoenix, Los Angeles and Seattle who travelled to Poland together as guests of the

Kislev.  Last shabbat and this shabbat — the two that come in the earliest in the year –just after 4 pm. Literally, the darkest time of year. The Torah begins with the creation of light, but the sun and moon were not created until the fourth day.   Our sages explain this discrepancy by suggesting that the light that was created with the first utterance was not the light of the

Feeling like strangers or outsiders isn’t a new experience for the Jewish people.  But when it comes to spending time in the developing world, navigating what makes us different as Jews – our religious or cultural practices, our identity and values – can bring with it unique challenges. What are these challenges – and what are the opportunities – of living Jewishly while serving in the developing world?  Rabbi Zvi