Thursday, December 05, 2019


Quality Questionnaire

At this time of year, high school yeshivas begin the long, arduous and often eventful process of fielding, reviewing and ruling on applications from prospective freshmen. It is a difficult task that schools try to handle with the utmost care and compassion as they endeavor to make sensible decisions that are in the best interests

A Ladder to Heaven

So what’s the best way to get to heaven? Perform some amazing act of faith? Save a thousand lives? Well, a pretty good answer may be found in this week’s parsha.

We read the story of Jacob’s dream and the famous ladder with its feet on the ground and head in the heavens. “And behold the

Discussing Biblical Archaeology With NFL Legend Jim Marshall

It was a most unusual meeting I had two years ago with NFL legend Jim Marshall, the famed defensive end for the Minnesota Vikings during the 1960s and 1970s (Mr. Marshall deserves to be included in the NFL Hall of Fame, but that is a topic for a different time). It all began before I left for Minneapolis where I was to serve as

For God and for Man

Parshat Toldot

The navi Malachi, whose words echo in today’s haftarah, served the Jewish nation during the time of Bayit Shani and actually was the last prophet of Israel. This selection, the opening prophecy of Sefer Malachi, speaks of God’s choice of Yaakov over Eisav and compares the

What Is the Meaning of ‘Michtam’ (Mem-Caf-Tav-Mem)?

Our subject is a word that appears only six times in Tanach, only in the book of Psalms, and only in the first verse each time. Our word appears in Chapter 16, and in Chapters 56 through 60. Two times we have “michtam Le-David.” Four times we have “Le-David michtam.”

This word is part of

Recognize and Appreciate the Everyday Miracles

Most of us are not consciously aware of the miracles we experience each day. We wake up in the morning (miracle number 1). We look out the window and see nothing but miracles all around. The sky, clouds, trees, grass, rain, snow or beautiful weather are all a result of the miracles of life.

Final Words, Last Laughs

In loving memory of Kalman Moshe ben Reuven Avigdor, z”l.

Quite often in an argument, people will try to have the last word. The thinking is that if you end the argument and the person doesn’t respond, you’ve won. It’s almost childish in a way, no, it’s actually childish in every way,

The Ashke-Sefard Dilemma

Our children live in a bifurcated world. For the most part (except for the Israelis among us) we come from Ashkenazic backgrounds, yet our children are taught Hebrew with the Sefardic pronunciation. Most of them therefore read that way. The primary difference being no distinction between a kamatz and a patach, and always

A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words

Literacy has evolved tremendously over the centuries. Throughout history, different civilizations have come up with many ways of communicating, both written and orally. As a reading specialist, you may be shocked when I say that reading words isn’t everything! Reading pictures, games, movies and people are all crucial to

Giving Thanks in the Holy Land

I just ordered my turkey for Thanksgiving from my butcher Moshe in Modiin: 7.5 kilos of greasy, salty yumminess.

I’ve been counting down to this day, this last Thursday in November. I have always loved the fall, and not just because it’s my birthday month (although that certainty does give

Providing Jewish Technical and Professional Help to the British Military


In keeping with David Ben Gurion’s pledge: “We shall fight with Great Britain in this war as if there was no White Paper, and fight the White Paper as if there were no war,” the Hebrew University in Jerusalem played an extremely important part in fulfilling this

Did a Book Ever Change Your Life?

Welcome to our now thrice-yearly Literary Link, a labor of love by your Jewish Link editors, who all love to read and have found reading to be absolutely foundational to our lives. Our purpose in presenting a regular special section on books is to promote the joy and value of reading and lifelong learning, and of course to bring