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

Torah Prep School of St. Louis recently reopened its girls’ division building on Olive Boulevard following a $2.5 million renovation. Photos: Eric Berger

Torah Prep completes $2.5 million renovation

By Eric Berger, Staff WriterPublished December 28, 2016

Torah Prep School of St. Louis recently underwent a $2.5 million renovation of its girls division school in University City. The Orthodox school, which instructs students from preschool through eighth grade, now features a new roof, as well as new heating...

Participants in the San Francisco Pride Parade showing their Jewish and Israeli pride, too, June 30, 2014. (Wikimedia Commons)

Jewish denominations, even Orthodox, starting to wrestle with transgender issues

Uriel HeilmanPublished April 5, 2016

NEW YORK (JTA) – Here’s a riddle: If a transgender Jew shows up at an Orthodox synagogue, on which side of the mechitzah barrier separating the sexes should the person be seated?That’s an easy one compared to more complex Jewish legal questions...

90,000 celebrate completion of page a day Talmud study

URIEL HEILMAN, JTAPublished August 2, 2012

what she was learning. “The Talmud, for someone who has a diverse range of interests, is the most incredible text because it has everything in it,” Kurshan told JTA. “There’s nothing as exciting as the next page of Gemarah because it’s so discursive....

With special prayers and kosher food, Jewish London embracing Olympic spirit

By Miriam Shaviv, JTAPublished July 30, 2012

LONDON — For Leslie Lyndon and the London Jewish community, it was a minor miracle.When Lyndon carried the Olympic torch through a north London neighborhood last week, it was more than representative of how Jewish Londoners have embraced the Olympic...

President Obama, flanked by Nathan Diament, left, and Dr. Simcha Katz of the Orthodox Union, displays the framed reproduction of President George Washington’s letter to the Jewish community of Newport, R.I., that he was given at the conclusion of his Oval Office meeting with Orthodox Jewish leaders.

Nathan Diament bestrides Orthodox, Washington worlds

By Ron Kampeas, JTAPublished July 10, 2012

WASHINGTON — Nathan Diament learned two things 22 years ago while watching Barack Obama play pickup basketball at the Harvard Law School gym.“He was a generous passer,” he said of the school’s Law Review editor and the future U.S. president. “He...

Israel’s Chief Rabbinate facing new wave of criticism and calls for change

By Neil Rubin, JTAPublished July 9, 2012

WASHINGTON — The latest battle over religious pluralism in Israel has unleashed a new barrage of criticism and calls for reform aimed at the Orthodox-controlled Israeli Chief Rabbinate. Unlike major flare-ups in past decades, however, this time it’s...

Editorial: Push Me, Pull You

Published June 20, 2012

Should religious institutions adapt to changing times or ought they insist on conformance to their traditional practices? It’s a tug of war that has been repeated throughout the ages, with the rope being pulled aggressively to one side or the other....

President Barack Obama is photographed with Orthodox Jewish rabbis inthe Oval Office, June 5, 2012.

In outreach to Orthodox Jews, Obama repeats commitment to Israel

By Ron Kampeas, JTAPublished June 6, 2012

WASHINGTON -- President Obama is spreading the word, one Jewish constituency at a time: He has Israel's back. Obama defended his record on Israel and on religious freedoms on Tuesday during a White House meeting with Orthodox leaders. Challenged by one...

Rabbi Alona Lisitsa, a Reform rabbi, participated in a religious council in in Mevasseret Zion, a town west of Jerusalem, May 2012.

Reform, Conservative movements continue making inroads in Israel

By Mati Wagner, JTAPublished May 22, 2012

JERUSALEM — After a Jerusalem-area’s religious council allowed a female Reform rabbi to participate in its proceedings, some advocates of liberal Judaism in the country are hailing their inroads into the Orthodox-dominated religious infrastructure....

Participants in a Skype class on shechita — slaughter of animals according to the laws of kashrut — watch and listen via Skype (running on the laptop in foreground at right) to Rabbi Chaim Loike, a rabbinic coordinator with the Orthodox Union in New York. The class meets once a week at Nusach Hari B’nai Zion. Those learning shechita plan to be able to donate their services to provide kosher meat to financially distressed, observant families in the area. From left are Jerry Esrig, Mickey Ariel, Ethan Schuman, Dan Vianello (in background), Rabbi Howard Graber and Buddy Adler.

‘Cutting edge’ shechita classes support charitable initiative


“Cutting-edge plus cutting edge.” That’s how Dr. Ethan Schuman describes a new initiative for nine local men to learn — via Skype, an online videoconference program — how to slaughter livestock according to kashrut, Jewish dietary law. The...

Bobby Ingram (center) is flanked by co-workers who volunteered over the weekend painting the Youth in Need headquarters in St. Charles.

Schmooze’s Ellen returns from Israel

Ellen Futterman, EditorPublished May 16, 2012

United we run In a groundbreaking collaboration, pre-teen girls in the local Orthodox, Conservative and Reform Jewish communities joined together this spring to participate in Girls on the Run, the nonprofit after-school program that seeks to inspire...

Mordechai Simon

Encyclopedic lives

By Mordechai SimonPublished May 2, 2012

With the recent news that the publishers of Encyclopedia Britannica would stop producing hardbound, paper copies of their venerable reference, yet another nail was hammered in the coffin of the 20th century.For those of a certain age, or of sentimental...

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