Grand gestures in art and religion

By Naftali Brawer, May 13, 2013

The Tate Modern's current retrospective of Roy Lichtenstein's pop art includes a series of 1960s paintings called "brushstrokes". In these paintings, the Jewish artist parodies abstract expressionists such as Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning who freely expressed their feelings through "action painting" by throwing, smearing or dripping paint on canvas.


Ritual focus risks losing the big picture

By Dina Brawer, February 22, 2013

A couple of years ago I was having dinner with one of my closest friends, who has since passed away. She was not, strictly speaking, ritually observant although she was an extraordinarily charitable person and deeply concerned with the welfare of others. It was the last serious conversation we had - which might be why it remains etched in my mind.


Prayer that makes past present

By Rebecca Abrams, February 17, 2013

Last year, I took part in a remarkable ceremony at the Rose Garden in Oxford, beneath which lies the medieval Jewish cemetery, abandoned in 1290 when the entire Jewish community of England was abruptly expelled by Edward I. We had gathered to unveil a plaque to commemorate the site and recite Kaddish for those buried there.


Israel’s ‘Soviet’ prayer police

By Geoffrey Alderman, January 15, 2013

Last month, Israeli police arrested worshippers at the entrance to the Western Wall in Jerusalem. The worshippers had committed a heinous crime: they had tried to pass through the gates leading from the plaza to the Wall itself wearing tallitot.


Time to put the poetry back into our prayers

By Rabbi Dr Jeffrey Cohen, August 30, 2012

I love both English and Hebrew poetry, especially sacred Hebrew poetry, which has a very long tradition stretching back to the Bible.


Thousands join debate on dangers of internet

By Marcus Dysch, August 2, 2012

A conference to discuss steering young strictly Orthodox Jews away from online dangers is expected to attract up to 6,000 people.


Satmars told to demolish shul in family home

By Jessica Elgot, March 29, 2012

A planning inspector has ruled that a Satmar synagogue built in a family home in Stamford Hill must be demolished.

Satmar leaders must also pay Hackney Council the costs of a public inquiry into the planning violation because the appeal was "unreasonable".

The Bethune Road property had been extended and converted without planning permission.


Site launched to link global Jewry in recovery prayers

By Jennifer Lipman, September 12, 2011

A teacher whose sister battled leukemia has developed a website for Jews around the world to unite in prayers for a speedy recovery.

Shira Kalish, from Long Island, came up with the idea of "linking the Jewish community through chesed (lovingkindness)" when she witnessed the response to her sister's illness.


How do you get a new nose? Use your head

By Marcus Dysch, May 26, 2011

It may not have been a nose job in the traditional sense, but the story behind 109-year-old Meir Korner's new nose is quite remarkable.

Surgeons in his home city of Haifa were forced to amputate because of a tumour - and immediately rebuilt it using skin from his own forehead.


Blitz bombing victims are remembered

By Bernard Josephs, May 19, 2011

Faded photographs of smiling young Londoners shortly before their lives were cut short are all that remains of victims of one of the capital's worst wartime disasters.