A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

Putting salt in the corners of room, wearing a red wool thread as a bracelet and never throwing a hat on the bed are just a few of many Jewish superstitions. All photos:Bill Motchan

Bring on the ‘bubbe meises’: A look at Jewish superstitions

By Bill Motchan, Special to the Jewish Light June 14, 2021

Never toss a hat on a bed. Always close a holy book when you finish reading it. Spit three times when you hear good or bad news. Many of us grew up hearing and adhering to these and other Jewish superstitions. Often they defy logic. But, like chicken...

IDF soldiers receive toiletries, personal care products and other items through the support of the St. Louis-based non-profit, Shaving Israel.

St. Louis non-profit supports Israeli soldiers

By Galit Lev-Harir, Special to the Jewish Light May 10, 2018

While on a mission to Israel with the Jewish Federation of St. Louis in 2004, Rachel Miller decided to visit her friend, Carol Hellman, z”l (of blessed memory), who was volunteering with the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) through the program “Sar-El.” Miller...

Will Soll teaches a Yiddish version of a Passover song at a Shaare Emeth Yiddish Club meeting.

Yiddish groups help keep language alive in St. Louis

BY BILL MOTCHAN, SPECIAL TO THE JEWISH LIGHT May 2, 2018

You say you have shpilkes when Cardinals manager Mike Matheny calls the bullpen for a relief pitcher? Had a little too much wine and you’re feeling shikker? That’s a shondeh! But don’t worry, bubbe, listen to my mayse.Please pardon me if I’m...

Missouri drivers have made use of their license plates to share Jewish and Yiddish words and phrases.

Wearing Jewish pride on your license plate

By Bill Motchan, Special to the Jewish Light October 19, 2016

There are 166,000 personalized license plates in Missouri, but there’s only one MOHEL. Fittingly, it belongs to an actual mohel, Rabbi Mike Rovinsky.Rovinsky first had MOHEL license plates when he was based in Texas. He got Missouri MOHEL plates when...

The former B’nai El synagogue, located on Flad Avenue in the Shaw neighborhood of St. Louis city

10 architecturally significant St. Louis synagogues

By Bill Motchan, Special to the Jewish Light October 14, 2015

Following is a list of 10 local synagogues that represent significant architectural works. The first eight also embody the spirit of adaptive reuse. Three (Bais Abraham, CRC and Kol Rinah) are still active synagogues. Bais Abraham 6910 Delmar...

Views of the interior of the United Hebrew building on Skinker Boulevard, in 1927 and repurposed as the Missouri History Museum’s Library and Research Center in 2011.  Photos courtesy Missouri History Museum photos and prints collection  

Holy buildings wholly repurposed: Spirit of historic synagogues lives on in new uses

By Bill Motchan, Special to the Jewish Light October 14, 2015

Danny Gonzales was hired as a researcher at the Missouri History Museum Library in 2009. It was his first day on the job, and he was eager to get started. But he couldn’t concentrate. The problem was not the stifling August heat. “I sat down to...

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A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.