Good morning, New York. Hope you enjoyed the snowy weekend.
100 years young: SAJ, Judaism that Stands for All, a Reconstructionist synagogue on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, last week began celebrating its 100th anniversary. Read our history of the synagogue and the youngest of Judaism’s four major denominations.
- Photo, top: SAJ’s Hebrew school graduating class of 1945. (Courtesy)
Yanked: A Brooklyn tow truck driver was fired after telling a crowd of Jews in Borough Park “let Hitler kill your [expletive].” Onlookers had gathered Sunday when his truck blocked traffic on 50th Street; the towing company confirmed he had been fired. (Hamodia)
Blame games: Philosopher Bernard-Henri Levy, former refusenik Natan Sharansky and Elie Wiesel’s son Elisha urged athletes and corporate sponsors to “walk away” from the upcoming Olympic Games to protest China’s persecution of the Uighur minority. Their full-page ad in The New York Times appeared on Saturday, a week before the winter games begin in Beijing.
Giving his regards: The real-life British rabbi portrayed in the Broadway musical “Come From Away” visited the cast and crew on Thursday at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre on West 45th Street. In 2001, Rabbi Leivi Sudak had been on his way from his home in London to the grave of the Lubavitcher Rebbe in Queens when the 9/11 attacks diverted his plane to Newfoundland, Canada — events depicted in the musical. (Report Door)
- In 2017, when “Come From Away” opened on Broadway, the New York Jewish Week interviewed Sudak about his real-life story behind the musical.
PEOPLE & PLACES
NCSY – the national youth movement of the Orthodox Union – honored the late Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan on the 39th anniversary of his death with the launch of the NCSY Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan Library, which will reissue volumes of his writings on Judaism and Kabbalah. The Bronx-born Kaplan wrote numerous books on Jewish spirituality and meditation, and was known for his outreach to unaffiliated and alienated Jewish teenagers.
Yeshiva University announced the creation of the Sacks Book Prize, funded by the Rohr family and honoring the memory of Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, the late public intellectual and chief rabbi of the United Kingdom. The $50,000 prize will be awarded to an author of a recently published or about to be published work of Jewish ideas “deeply sourced in Jewish texts, with broad appeal within and beyond the Jewish community.”
WHAT’S ON TODAY
Tour the Babylonian Jewry Heritage Center in Or Yehuda, Israel from the comfort of your own home with Nachliel Selavan, the “Museum Guy.” Presented by the American Sephardi Federation. Noon.
Dr. Benjamin Sommer examines the “psalms of crisis” in the Book of Psalms, and discusses several theories about their main emphasis. Register here for this Jewish Theological Seminary program. 2:00 p.m.