The Best of The Year: 2014

Top 10 articlesIn case you missed any, here – based on site analytics, and in alphabetical order – are our Top Ten posts from 2014:

A Millennial Speaks
By Rachel Cort

As a formerly unengaged Millennial, who was inspired to build Jewish experiences for people like me, I’m writing not simply to offer criticism but also to share insights.

A Purim Message for the PJ Library
By Victoria L. Steinberg

As a Jewish mother, I read with interest a recent blog post explaining the Harold Grinspoon Foundation’s decision to make “The Purim Superhero” – a story about a boy, Nate, who has two dads – available only to PJ Library families who request it, but not to all of its subscribers.

Coming Clean as a Rabbi: Understanding Addiction and Embracing Jewish Spirituality
By Paul Steinberg

This year, I do not have a pulpit from which to speak. I lost my opportunity, along with my prestige, my pride, and my entire station due to the wreckage of my disease – alcoholism and addiction.

Hadassah: As the Hospital Files Bankruptcy, Incompetence Rules
By Dan Brown

I write this as a resident of Jerusalem. I write this is a 2x surgical patient at Hadassah – one of the finest hospitals in Israel – who has nothing but good to say about the treatment and care provided by world class surgeons and a trained, caring and over-worked medical staff.

I Thought You Said You Wanted To Run Things Like A Business
By Dr. Hal M. Lewis

After years of working and teaching in the Jewish community I should know better. But, I continue to be struck by the irony that many of the same individuals who claim to want our communal institutions to “run more like businesses,” ignore the very principles and best practices that would enable us to do exactly that.

Introducing the Slingshot Class of 2014 – 2015

Among the hundreds of organizations that applied for inclusion 82 were selected, and were evaluated on their innovative approach, the impact they have in their work, the leadership they have in their sector, and their effectiveness at achieving results.

Is There a Need for Both BBYO and NFTY?
By Daniel S. Horwitz

Jewish youth organization involvement, whether pluralistic or Reform Movement affiliated, is inherently positive in terms of the lasting impacts on a teen’s Jewish identity and communal engagement.

Israel Programs: The Case for Tel Aviv

By Benji Lovitt

Israel has changed over 66 years. Our programs should reflect those changes.

Jewish Rebrand – Let’s Get Rid of the Old Labels
By David Strulowitz

There’s nothing sacrosanct about [labels]. Rebranding takes place all the time. Ours are long overdue. The labels of Orthodox, Ultra Orthodox, Modern Orthodox, Conservative, Reform and Reconstructionist don’t do these movements justice. Worse than that, they are divisive. I would suggest that as a result of our institutional complacency, the labels by default have contributed to what has become a more fractious and divided Jewish culture and society.

The Vendor Trap: Why Selling Spirituality Doesn’t Work
By Michael Wasserman

What would a more fundamental restructuring of the synagogue look like? What would it mean for synagogues to truly leave the vendor model behind?