Jewish life

Battle for the Jewish community in Syria is lost

By Martin Bright, June 28, 2013

It is now over a decade since I met Mouffak in the Aleppo souk. This young Syrian was a trader in objets d’art and he had a unique sales pitch: “If you come and see my shop, I’ll show you my synagogue”.

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Leonard Cohen fans upset over Yom Kippur O2 gig

By Jennifer Lipman, June 28, 2013

Hallelujah may be Leonard Cohen’s most famous song but it hardly describes the current mood of the legendary Canadian singer’s Jewish fans.

They are down in the dumps over news that the Jewish-born star’s concert in London has been scheduled for September 14 — the day of Yom Kippur.

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Map of 19th century Jewish life on display

By Josh Jackman, June 28, 2013

This rare map, dated 1889, showing the distribution of Jews living in East London has just gone on display in the capital.

Created by cartographer George Arkell, it covers an area stretching three miles, from the borders of the City of London to Mile End, and reveals that the highest concentration of Jews — from 95 to 100 per cent, shown in blue — was located in and around Whitechapel.

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Gay Jewish woman in historic legal victory

By Josh Jackman, June 28, 2013

A lawsuit brought by a Jewish woman has led the Supreme Court in America to abolish a law which denied gay spouses equal benefits.

The justices narrowly voted 5-4 in favour of striking down section three of the Defence of Marriage Act (Doma), a move which further normalises gay marriage in America.

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Review: Despicable Me 2

By Brigit Grant, June 28, 2013

Attention parents, bubbas and zaidas everywhere. If the thought of another blanket grey weekend spent in soft-play hell with the kids is more than you can stand, fear not. Gru, his adopted orphans and those dinky yellow minions, have returned to chase away the bouncy castle blues and, like a good family board game, delight everyone from six to 96.

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Science and religion: we don’t control the facts

By Daniel Finkelstein, June 28, 2013

When I last visited my doctor’s surgery I saw a big sign on the wall with the figure 79 in large bright red letters. This, the sign said, was the number of patients who had failed to attend appointments in the past week and not told the doctor. As I explained to readers of The Times later the same week, this sign is a mistake.

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Signing up for refugees

June 24, 2013

Marking Refugee Week, the Jewish Council for Racial Equality is trying to get at least 1,000 signatures for its “No way to live” petition in support of asylum seekers’ rights.

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Fed learning in Redbridge

June 24, 2013

A session on Zionism with the Redbridge community’s Israeli emissary, Orly Kenig, completed the latest Diploma in Judaism course at Ilford Federation Synagogue led by minister Rabbi Alex Chapper.

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Disney man animated over fun way to teach Jewish education

By Jennifer Lipman, June 21, 2013

As an animator for Disney, he has worked on films like Pocahontas, Mulan, and Winnie the Pooh. Now Saul Blinkoff is hoping that his cartoons will bring colour and fun to Jewish education.

Mr Blinkoff is on the advisory board of Jewish Interactive, the organisation that develops technology that can be used to teach children about Judaism. It works with nearly 30 Jewish schools in the UK.

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Morris Feinmann: a happy end to a moving story

By Jonathan Kalmus, June 17, 2013

Changing demands for care of the elderly has put pressure on Jewish welfare agencies to adapt their properties. In south Manchester, the Morris Feinmann home’s solution has been the relocation of residents while its premises are rebuilt in a collaboration with a major regional care provider.

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