Cycling towards affirmation

By Jonathan Rynhold, October 13, 2016

Who will live and who will die?" These words, at the heart of the Yom Kippur prayers, echo across the Jewish world uniting Israel and the diaspora. Yet there is a deep chasm separating the experience of Yom Kippur in the sovereign Jewish state and elsewhere.


Which way now for us in the political centre ground?

By Jennifer Lipman, October 13, 2016

Oh, so you're the one who wrote that article about being a Labour voter," said the Conservative Friends of Israel staff member with a disgruntled look as I and other reporters boarded the campaign bus.


Why motherhood is a constant atonement

By Jemma Wayne, October 7, 2016

Never in my life have I asked for forgiveness more often. Perhaps there were times as a child when my sister and I were flinging ourselves between being inseparable and infuriated, but those were begrudging apologies, and we were always just as sinned against as sinning.


We all need to confess our sins

By Erica Brown, October 6, 2016

Many Jews have admitted to me that they secretly wish we had a confession box, a shadowy dark space to unburden ourselves of our own dark deeds in anonymity. A priest friend who listens to confessions about 10 hours a week (by the way, that's a small part-time job) says anonymity is not easy when you work in a community and most of your confession box visitors are repeat offenders.


Community just can't leave Labour alone

By Marcus Dysch, October 6, 2016

As the train carried me home from Labour's party conference, I peered out across Merseyside and pondered what I had seen and heard.

It was not the gloom as we passed through Runcorn that vexed me, but the seemingly endless damage being done to the party's relationship with the Jewish community.


Empty chair at Peres's funeral

By Alona Ferber, October 6, 2016

One of the biggest question marks hanging over the funeral of Israeli founding father Shimon Peres was whether any Arab leaders would attend. As luminaries from 70 countries headed to Jerusalem, people wondered: Would Egypt's President Sisi attend? He sent his foreign minister. Would the Palestinians send a representative? They did: President Abbas himself.


Listen to the backbenchers

By Ben Judah, September 29, 2016

Here comes Rosh Hashanah and here comes the rabbi's ever so familiar sermon. You've certainly heard it before. I've heard it more times than I can remember. The so-so-familiar Rosh Hashanah sermon chastising those Jews "who come only three times a year." But this Rosh Hashanah the congregation needs to finger-wag back at the rabbi.


We all need to look outwards

By Jonathan Boyd, September 29, 2016

There's a part of the High Holy Day liturgy that stops me in my tracks every year. It comes up repeatedly throughout Yom Kippur, during the vidui - the confession. Ma anu? Meh chayeinu? Meh chasdeinu? Ma tzidkoteinu? "What are we? What are our lives? What is our kindness? What is our righteousness?"


Sun and stars out for New Year

By Suzanne Levy, September 29, 2016

I'm standing in my Yom Tov best, slightly squinting in the bright sunlight. It's hot, really hot, and the sun is burning my back. That's probably the most disorienting thing about the High Holy Days in Los Angeles. You're schvitzing. A lot of the time.


Peres the politician: His global stature grew

By Sir Malcolm Rifkind, September 29, 2016

Certain statesmen bestride the world like a colossus. Nelson Mandela, Henry Kissinger, Mikhail Gorbachev and Margaret Thatcher have been examples in our own time.

Shimon Peres was one of that small pantheon.

I was fortunate in meeting him on several occasions. He was always witty as well as wise.