Friday, August 29, 2014

Photos-Thousands attend Levaya for Ha'B'achur Aaron Sofer Z"L, Family asks men and women take on something Erev shabbos

Reb Moshe Tzvi Sofer at the Lavaya of his son Aaron Z'L
Thousands attended the levaya and gave kavod acharon to HaBachur Aaron Sofer Z"L from Lakewood, who was niftar tragically in yerushalayim after dehydrating in Yaar  yerushalyim. His Rosh yeshiva Rav Tzvi Kaplan was maspid as was his father Reb Moshe Sofer, Rav Tuvia Weiss Gaavad Eidah hacharedis of Yerushalyim and other family members. The maspidim spoke about his hasmadah in learning, his chashivus to the sidrei hayeshiva, his dikduk hamitzvos, kibbud av V'em and his being a true ben Torah. His Rosh Yeshiva said that Aaron was chosen to be the meyased of the yeshiva in Olam Ha'emes. The R'Y said  over from his father in law Rav Michel Feinstein z'tl that in the next world there wont be just one big yeshiva but many yeshivos. After founding his yeshiva 17 years ago he thought he would be the first one to establish it in olam haba, but Aaron was chosen first. He will be coming to olam haba with 20 full years of Torah. Even on his last trip of which he did not return, he took along a sefer to learn from and went like a true yeshiva man with his hat and jacket. The Rosh Yeshiva also referenced to Aaron not having a cell phone. Kevurah took place in Beit Shemesh near his grandfathers kever.
Hamodia article has more on the hespedim.

MOOD - the response to the scare tactics and dire statistics about the shidduch crisis

There are dire statistics when it comes to the shidduch crisis- recently there was an article claiming that 85% of girls over age of 25 will not get married. Other stats saying 10% of girls will never marry. They paint a very bleak picture for singles in shidduchim along with their parents who have it hard enough, these stats only make it worse.

 Enter MOOD, Mothers Of Older Daughters not a solution to the shidduch crisis but a movement to be constructive and positive while waiting for a shidduch. One can lose hope reading all the articles every week about the shidduch crisis, its very depressing and causes panic and fear. Its counter productive since it makes girls even more desperate. Every mother has to believe that her daughter will i'yh get married. It can be depressing to be in the MOOD why not break the MOOD and do constructive things

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Boruch dayan Ha'emes- Body of Aaron Sofer Z''L found in Jerusalem forest near Ein kerem, cause- dehydration, not terror related.

Area were body was found
After searching for almost a week -The body of American yeshiva Bochur from Lakewood  Aaron Sofer was found in the Forest near Ein Kerem in yerushalayim. Members of ichud hatzalah who participated in the search came across some personal belongings, among them a hat and jacket that belonged to Aaron Sofer. His body was found nearby. There were no signs of any physical harm which leads investigators to believe he lost his way, and died of dehydration or might have fallen off a cliff. At this point it does not seem to be terror related. Aaron, who turned 23 this week, was learning by  Rav Tzvi Kaplan’s Yeshiva  in Yerushalayim.
 יהי זכרו ברוך‬‎ may the family be comforted and hear no more tzaar.

Atzeres tefilla in Lakewood draw a few thousands who davened for missing bochur Aaron Sofer Z''L - Rav Sorotzkin spoke about fate of second bochur

The Ateres Reva hall in Lakewood was packed and traffic was tied up as thousands made their way to the atzeres tefilla. The atzeres was called for by Lakewood Roshei yeshiva and Agudas yisrael, to daven to hashem for a safe return of Aaron Sofer an American yeshiva Bachur from Lakewood who went missing in Erez Yisrael. Rav Yitzchock Sorotzkin shlita Rosh Yeshiva Telz and Lakewood Mesivta delivered divrei chizuk and hisoirerus. The Rosh yeshiva said stressed that the olam have in mind other bachur who was also on the hike.  We should also Daven for Akiva ben Rochel Rikkel, who was hiking with Aron Sofer, and being heavily interrogated by Israeli police. He was the last person to see Aaron sofer. The fact the a bachur from Lakewood is missing as in a tzara in Eretz yisrael means hashem is sending us a message. He wants us to come closer to him to said Rav Sorotzkin. hashem wants to take us out of golus and the only way is for us to realize that he is the only power in the world. Not the politicians and generals but ein od milvado. We must come to that realization. we should each take upon ourselves to come to this realization hu eloykaynu ein od, and that should be for a zechus  and bring the geula shleima.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Lakewood Roshei yeshiva, Agudah call for Atzeres tefilla on behalf of missing yeshiva bachur Aaron Sofer

The Atzeres will take place this evening in Lakewood at Ateres Reva hall. at 8:30 divrei hisoirerus by Rav Yitzchok Sorotzkin, Rosh yeshivos Telz and Lakewood mesivta. The event is also called for by Agudath Yisrael of America.

Why the search for Aaron Sofer matters- did we forget what we did for the 3 missing teens h''yd On Fiday, August 22, Aaron Sofer was taking a shortcut through the Jerusalem Forest with his friend. The two became separated when his friend wanted to try hiking up a hill, and later that evening when the friend returned home, he discovered that Aaron was missing. When I came online Saturday night, I learned about Aaron’s disappearance on Facebook when somebody asked about all the vehicles they saw over Shabbat. It took almost another 24 hours before I heard anything else about Aaron, when one of my rabbis started asking why nobody was talking about his disappearance.

My rabbi’s question is an interesting one. Earlier this summer, when the three boys went missing, news about them hit the Internet like a tidal wave. Since then, people have been constantly posting about events in Israel, Gaza, and the entire Middle East. When an Israeli soldier went missing, everyone began to panic. When a 4 year old boy was killed by a rocket, many gathered online to mourn. Yet, when Aaron Sofer disappeared, in a place where an atrocity had occurred earlier in the summer, there is little more than silence. Why is this?

Aaron Sofer is 23. He isn’t a boy, he’s not our son, or our little brother.

Video- Aaron Sofer on Jerusalem light rail on way to his hike. FBI joins in the search

Rav Shteinman- Mir yeshiva, bochurim to join in search in jerusalem forest for missing American yeshiva bochur

Searching for Missing yeshiva bochur
Hundreds of Israeli Yeshiva bochurim learning in the Mir yeshiva and other Yeshivos in yerushalayim will participate and join in the search for missing yeshiva bochur Aaron Sofer whose gone missing now for 5 days. They will help comb through the Jerusalem forest where he was last seen. According to reports in the Israeli media Rav Shteinman specified that that only Israeli Yeshiva bochurim join in the search. American Bochurim are not as familiar with the area.

Since Elul zman  has begun, there is a shortage of volunteers and there's  still a need for manpower as not all areas of yaar yerushalayim have been thoroughly searched. please continue to daven for אהרן בן חולדה

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

No shame, VIN article on missing American yeshiva bochur hosts comments attacking the yeshiva world

Aaron Sofer
We heard so much about the achdus when the three teens were kidnapped, where did it all go? does the hishtadlus to help look for him and hopefully find him safe and sound? do the parents not have a right to turn over every stone to help locate their missing son?  Mrs. Frankel who's son was kidnapped and killed by hamas met Aron Sofers parents  to give  Chizuk as they await the unknown, but the bloggers and commenters know better.
boys black hat make him not worthy of our tefillos and

Just when you think things cant get any worse for a family, imagine the pain and suffering of a family not knowing the ware-about of their son whose gone missing for 5 days. An article on VIN reporting the news of  Aaron Sofer a yeshiva Bochur from Lakewood whose gone missing while hiking in the Jerusalem forest, instead of being sympathetic, hosts the most vile comments against the yeshiva world and charedim. Allowing comments questioning the family's right asking for the IDF to help with the search. Others comments questioning what right did they have to go hiking?

Sunday, August 24, 2014

News of the Yeshiva world- Elul zman 5774 begins

Elul zman 5774 is about to get under way as the summer bein hazmanim comes to an end, yeshiva bachurim and Kolell youngeleit are heading back to the bais medrash in their respective yeshivos. Many yeshivos are starting the zman prior to Rosh Chodesh Elul, they will begin Elul zman Sunday evening 28 AV 5774. Yeshivos will recite Yom Kippur katan on Monday Erev Rosh Chodesh Elul.

Rav Shlomo Feivel Schustal is leaving Torah temima and opening a new Yeshiva for Bais medrash bochurim. The yeshiva will begin elul zman in the Catskills at camp Morris and eventually move to Asbury park, NJ.

Search intensifies for missing American yeshiva bochur from Lakewood in yerushalayim

Staging area for the search
Over 600 volunteers including many yeshiva bochurim, are joining in the search for missing American yeshiva Bochur from Lakewood. Aaron Sofer, 23, went missing after hiking with a friend Friday at the forest outside  Yerushalayim. Name for tehillim is Aaron ben Chulda he is currently learning at Rav Tzvi Kaplan's yeshiva in yerushalayim. His father is a kollel member in Lakewood yeshiva Beth Medrash Govoha. His friend was walking ahead of him and lost contact with aaron on erev shabbos..


Yated Neeman, FJJ did not print this week other papers trim down during bein hazmanim

 Looking for a Yated at the news stand? no it was not sold out ,some frum newspapers and magazines did not print this week. The Yated Neeman, Flatbush Jewish Journal and others took advantage of  bein hazmanim and gave the writers some time off. In a way a week without papers is refreshing read here. On the contrary, its during these weeks that many are vacationing and enjoy reading up the frum newspapers. Some magazines publish feature articles for the summer reading season.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Our own #Icebucketchallenge

מים טהורים

The Social media frenzy, the ALS Ice bucket challenge  used to raise awareness and funds for research for the terrible  machla of ALS,  is an activity involving dumping a bucket of ice water on one's head or donating to the ALS Association in the United States. The challenge dares nominated participants to be filmed having a bucket of ice water poured on their heads. A common stipulation is that nominated people have 24 hours to comply or forfeit by way of a charitable financial donation. President George Bush, Microsoft ceo Bill Gates and other celebrities all joined in and participated, Obama has yet to respond he opted to give a check.
While this is a meshugass for a good cause, when it comes to our own mosdos and tzadakas are we only giving when we are challenged in one way or another. The amount of money that Mosdos have to spend on marketing just to get our attention is mind boggling.

Rebbe asks for cameras to be installed in his classroom.

A veteran Rebbe in  upstate NY who doubles as a English teacher at another school, asked that cameras be installed in his classroom after he was falsely accused by a first grader no less. The student said that he sat on the Rebbe's lap. The principle of the school immediately took action to investigate and confronted the rebbe about his version of the story. Not only was this made up as the student himself admitted but there was a therapist in the classroom the whole time acting as a shadow to another student who gave witness that the story was fabricated. Not taking any more chances  under a culture of threat from students who can use any allegation to retaliate, the rebbe asked for cameras to be installed. Its sad that one has to be scared to become a Rebbe and transmit Torah to tinokos shel bais Raban..

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Gedolim vacationing and visiting the Catskills

Rav Aaron Shechter and Rav Elya Ber Wachtfogel in camp Morris

Rabbi Gershon Yankelewitz Z"TL, 103, was Oldest living talmid of the Chofetz Chaim and Mir yeshiva, RY at RIETS for 60 years

Petirah of Rav Gershon Yankelewitz one of the last remaining alter mirrers and Talmid of the Chofetz Chaim in Radin. Watch Video below about his escape to Japan with the Mir Yeshiva

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

pouring salt on a tragedy..

Aharon Follman z”l, a three year old boy Lo aleinu passed away Sunday evening August 17th in the Catskills, due a tragic fire that struck the bungalow he was sleeping in. The fire started apparently from a faulty clip on fan in the master bedroom and spread to the other rooms. It happened at the Mareh Yechezkel bungalow colony in Swan lake, NY. The Colony is frequented by karlsbug Chasidim under the leadership of Rav Yechezkel Roth shlita. Not knowing the facts, It didnt take to long for the self hating frum blogs to put the blame on the lack of smoke detectors in the colony. Instead of being noseh bol during a time of tzara the blogs were out there portraying chasidim as careless negligent, individuals who dont know the basics of fire saftey. The article and comments below were full of hate and mocking how chasidim are third world, and don't comply with regulations. The mother of the boy was present during the fire as was the father, they heroically

Monday, August 18, 2014

Ami Magazine editorial why it refused to publish article printed in secular paper.

In defense of observance by rote, a article  was published in the secular forward newspaper, Ami magazine editor Rabbbi Yitzchock Frankfuter explains why he rejected the article even though the author asked him to carry it. The author claimed, an upstanding person with a nonobservant lifestyle is, on a spiritual scale, light years beyond those who go through motions of observance but without giving much thought to what they are doing. The editorial counters putting  to much emphasis on intention, which while important can lead to negative consequences-and mislead people into thinking that intent and kavannah is equal to or even more important than the act itself.
A over emphasis on intent can lead people to repudiate the very dictates of the Torah as having no inherent value. The editorial brings various sources supporting this. Halacha has demphasized intent lest heretical tendencies seep into Judaism and corrupt the observance of Hashems commandments. It is better for a Jew to observe mitzvos by rote, even in almost a robotic fashion than to deviate from a single mitzva of Hashem. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Terry the UPS shadchan working on his next shidduch helping the shidduch crisis

Terry the UPS matchmaker shadchan 
UPS delivery driver Terry Spiers has been working his Crown Heights route for 23 years, giving him plenty of time to become acquainted with the families he serves. In fact, he's known as a matchmaker, of sorts, to his Orthodox Jewish customers, who have their own matchmaking system called "shidduch."

Achdus Album- Capturing the Catskills 72 lively moments of yidden across the spectrum

Photographer Baruch Ezagui captures vacationars up in the Catskill mountains. click HERE for entire photo album
waiting for a ride

fun in the pizza shop

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Pictures inside the Attic of the Altneu shul in Prague where the Golem is said to be buried

The Golem 
Altneu shul Attic in Prague under construction
An Israeli film crew recently went to the altneu shul in Prague and filmed the attic where the Golem is said to be buried.  The attic which is going under renovations now is partialy open and they took some pictures. apparently they did not find anything. According to legend, the body of the Golem of Pague  still lies in the synagogue's attic of the altneushul. When the attic was renovated in 1883, no evidence of the Golem was found. Some versions of the tale state that the Golem was stolen from the genizah and entombed in a graveyard in Prague's Žižkov district The attic is not open to the general public. Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson (the last Rebbe of Lubavitch) wrote that his father-in-law, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchok Schneersohn, told him that he saw the remains of the Golem in the attic of Alt-Neu Shul. Rabbi Chaim Noach Levin also wrote in his notes on Megillas Yuchsin  that he heard directly from Rabbi Yosef Shaul Halevi, the head of the Rabbinical court of Lemberg, that when he wanted to go see the remains of the Golem, the sexton of the Alt-Neu Shul said that Rabbi Yechezkel Landau had advised against going up to the attic after he himself had gone up. photos below.

Jewish Penicillin for the Pew Report

An article  published in the  Huff Post  about thezone kiruv camp run by Oorah
At the time of its release, a Pew report on the state of American Jewry released last October had the Jewish world in a tizzy. "We're shrinking!" they kvetched. "We're losing our people!" they shried. The Pew survey results found that as many as one-in-five American Jews (22%) describe themselves as having no religion. Moreover, the survey found that the percentage of adults in America who describe themselves as Jewish has dropped by half since the latter part of the 1950's and now stands at slightly less than 2%. These were significant (and shocking) stats.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

The Shidduch crisis is not a result of the age gap or numbers.

  Many factors and reasons are given for the so called "shidduch crisis" its blamed on the age gap between boys and girls when they enter the shidduch market.  An article in the Yated Ne'eman by Reb Shaya Ostrov  L.C.S.W. says, the problem is not caused by data as in numbers or an age gap. It is a direct result of the western culture which has impacted the thoughts, feelings and values of our society especially the frum singles. The failure of so many singles to find their bashert is not because there is a shidduch crisis the reality is every young unmarried man or woman carries this crisis within. 

Intermarriage, a solution for the Shidduch crisis.

 Yes, intermarriage! Well, we're not talking about marrying out of faith, but intermarrying within. Let me explain: there have been many suggestions  and solutions on fixing the so called shidduch crisis, such as closing the age gap, marrying older girls the NASI project etc. Of all frum singles of shidduchim age, many are not compatible for each other to begin with. We have within our own frum community many differe
nt camps and  societies.You have chasidish, litvish, modern orthodox, Lubavitch, Sefardi and so on. Most camps marry each other since they share simillar backgrounds and cultures.

 One can't expect a satmar chosid or a Lakewood yeshivish boy to marry an idealistic Lubavitch girl. The ideologies are far apart and the goals and way of life are different. However, all this leads to the normal baale batish yeshivish crowd who are the most effected by the shidduch crisis, with a smaller pool of boys and girls to choose from.

The issue at hand is within the yeshivish baale batish circles. We created our own camps and boundaries- some by nature, some at will. We created closed knitted circles among ourselves that will only marry with each other, not availing ourselves as prospects to the general pool.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Lashon Hora 24/7- Churban of the internet part III

Lashon Hora 24/7! that's how a prominent Rav summed up his drasha on Tisha B'Av regarding the use of social media and blogs as a vehicle to besmirch or bashmutz someone. Even though lashon hora is used with the tongue nevertheless it applies just as much in writing too. More so than speaking, by posting LH on the web it is there to stay, its there for eternity for all to see. It can be accessed any time from any where, it is broadcast to thousands of people. Not only that, but you give others the opportunity to chime in and add their two cents.
 Churban o the Internet part I 
Churban of the internet part II
While this is not something new, never the less as social media keeps on advancing and changing, the Lashon hora spread much faster and  brings many more people involved. This has now become the venue for anyone who has a machlokes or out to get someone to post it online or social media and share it with the entire world to see and enjoy.

Monday, August 11, 2014

There is NO shidduch crisis - a look at shidduchim on TU B'Av 5774.

Tu Bav the day that chazal say There were no better (i.e. happier) days for the people of Israel than the Fifteenth of Av and Yom Kippur, since on these days the daughters of Israel/Yerushalayim go out dressed in white and dance in the vineyards. What were they saying: Young man, consider whom you choose (to be your wife)? (Ta'anis, Chapter 4) It served as a matchmaking day for unmarried women during the time of the second bais hamikdosh. 
Read Full text Mishpacha magazine article HERE

Mishpacha magazine shidduch stat
Fast forward to Tu Bav 5774/2014  Mishpacha magazine in a article reaches out to noted askan and philanthropist, Reb Shlomo Yehuda rechnitz. In a rare interview Mr. Rechnitz shares the shocking pain and statistics of unmarried  bnos yisrael of  marriageable age. A crisis, he says is short lived, it is a problematic situation that needs a solution. Here with shidduchim  we are experiencing a catastrophe! Who can describe the pain and anguish that bnos yisrael are going through every day? right in front of our eyes, every day more bnos yisrael become destined to remain single. A stat shows the numbers of unmarried bais yaakov alumnae from a major American city graduating years 2000-2012 ranging from ages 20-31 there are 375 girls out of 1128 that are not married yet. 

Two years since Siyum hashas and start of 13th machzor of Daf Yomi at Metlife stadium. Siyum on maseches Megilah, on to Moed Katan

This Shabbos, Shabbos  Nachamu, 13 Av 5774  יג אב תשע'ד  marked the second year anniversary
Rabbi Yissochor Frand at the siyum hashas
since the 12th Siyum Hashas of Daf  Hayomi at Metlife stadium. It was exactly two years ago in 2012 were many celebrated the Siyum and 2 years since many have joined the machzor for the first time. Its hard to
 believe that 2 years flew by, but for those learning the Daf, they are about to complete  seder moed finishing masechtos Brachos, Shabbos, Eruvin, Pesachim, Shekalim, Yoma, Succah, Beitzah, Rosh Hashanah, Taanis, Megilah. The words of Rabbi Frand echo in our ears "Whats beyond your reach is within your grasp". Hopefully all those who started Brachos are still going strong. We can still join in the cycle. Here is the full video for those who want to relive the siyum experience. To see photos and video of the 2012 Siyum Hashas click HERE.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Inspiration and Elevation at Brooklyn Agudath israel Kinus in Response to World Events

 It was after a long workday, at the height of the summer, but well over 1,000 men and women packed The Palace ballroom Wednesday evening for a special gathering in light of the consequential events that Jews are experiencing around the world.

Embedded image permalinkThe Kinus Tefillah V'hisorerus was hosted by Agudath Israel of America at the behest of the Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah of America. The atmosphere in the filled majestic ballroom was both somber and energetic, with the urgency of the gathering not lost upon anyone. Already during tefillas Mincha at the commencement of the event, led by Rav Yosef Frankel, V'yelipoler  Rebbe and member of the Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah, an unusual degree of piety and kavana could be sensed in each word recited by both baal tefillah and audience.

Photo of newlywed couple in meah shearim wins a spot in National Geographic contest- Are we any different?

Chosson and kallah
Not sure what to make of this, on one hand this is a private moment not to be publicized. On the other hand we've become a society that publicizes everything from pictures of every simcha and event, is there a double standard? are we lacking in Tznius?

 - Mea Shearim, the ultra-Orthodox district of Jerusalem. Newly married couple Aaron and Rivkeh will be alone together for the first time after their wedding ceremony. Their marriage was arranged by their families. The 18-year-olds met once to confirm the choice; since then they have been prohibited to meet or even talk. National Geographic Traveler Director of Photography Dan Westergren, one of this year's judges, shares his thoughts on the second-place winner:

"Photography is a powerful tool for showing the ways that people around the world are clearly different but in many ways the same. The Orthodox fur hat and wedding dress are clues that this picture was taken in a very distinctive place. But the smile and laughter of the bride and groom indicate that these are teenagers reacting to a new situation. 

"When I look at the image I can't help but think about the nature of love and marriage around the world. Here is a scene that in many parts of the world could be a young couple on their first date. Because of the clothes they are wearing I know that this is not a lighthearted encounter but the beginning of a lifelong commitment. Any photograph that can make me think that much deserves to be a winner."

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah of America call for Kinnus Tefila tonight in Brooklyn Watch LIVE

The Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah of agudas yisrael of America has issued a Kol Korei calling for a special Kinnus Tefila V'hisorirus for men and women this coming Wednesday, August 6 (the day after Tisha B'Av), to be held at The Palace, 780 McDonald Avenue, with the program starting with Mincha at 6:30 PM, followed by divrei hisorirus, Tehillim and special tefillos.  The Kol Korei goes on to point out the importance of recognizing the seriousness of the current situation, and the special obligation we have not to let down our guard during these vacation weeks, and to conduct ourselves in a manner befitting the urgency of the moment.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Links for Tisha B'av 2014 - 5774 Live webcasts, shiurim, audio and video programs

                                  Fast begins Monday evening August 4th at sunset 8:07 pm

Below are links for Tisha B'Av 5774 Live webcasts and programs audio and phone hook ups for shiurim, Kinus .
Live Video
-Watch the Kosel Live HERE on Kotel cam

- Tisha Bav Video for kids HERE

Halachos -laws for Erev Tisha B'Av 5774 / 2014

1. After Chatzos on Erev tisha B'av some poskim hold the minhag is not to learn anything which is Assuron Tisha Bav itself. Only that which is Muttar to learn on the 9th of Av. (see below for permissible learning)

Lakewood yeshiva adds special bein hazmanim seder due to matzav facing klal yisrael

As bein hazmanim begins following Tisha B'av, Lakewood  Roshei  yeshiva are urging their talmidim to continue with a regular first seder schedule wherever they will be during Bein hazmanim. Bais Medrash Govoha Botei medrashim will host regular sedarim for those who choose to learn there during bein hazmanim. It is an עת צרה היא ליעקב and the way to combat is through Torah and tefillah. Other yeshivos and camps in America are adding a special bein hazmanim seder amid calls for chizuk in Torah learning due to the current sakana facing yidden both in Eretz yisrael and around the world.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Attacking those who wear Black hats and shaitels to an audience in the secular forward newspaper

A recent Article written by a frum columnist and writer published in the secular forward newspaper is quite disturbing. The author writes about frum Jews who live intense Jewish lives they dress and do everything Jewish yet only because that's what everyone else does. To quote him:
“Cultural Orthodox Jews,” a phrase I coined for people who eat only rabbinically supervised foods, wear black hats (or wigs), pray in synagogue daily and send their kids to yeshivas — but all, and only because, that’s what everyone in their community does. Such “COJs” may or may not believe in the Creator, but if they do, they don’t give Him much thought — even while living seemingly intense Jewish lives.
The author goes on to say that the greater contemporary challenge to the Orthodox world, I think, lies in the COJ phenomenon. The problem of doing things by rote as the article mentions is nothing new. Who has not heard a mussar shmuze about mitvos anashim melumada. How does this author go ahead and write an article making fun and disparaging so many frum yidden? Did he not hear of the concept of emunah peshuta that people live with not everything having to be understood. There are many levels of observance, does a yiddisher mammeh who clings to her tehillim and cook for shabbos and bake challah, keeps taharas hamishpacha and raises a beautiful mishpacha, yet not have a deep understanding of the mitzvos is she in the category of COJs? What about the

Friday, August 1, 2014


Agudath Israel of America applauds the United States Senate for unanimously passing legislation
that will provide $225M in new funding for the Iron Dome defense system. We deeply appreciate the strong bipartisan support the appropriation has enjoyed from all quarters -- the Obama Administration, the Senate and the House.

The Iron Dome defense system has proven itself to be a highly effective means of shooting down Hamas rockets that were intended to, and could have, killed or injured thousands of Israelis. It is vital to the safety and security of Israel, which has -- now and in the past -- endured missile attacks against border towns, as well as populated areas deep within the country. Hamas rockets have caused death and destruction and have resulted in the reality of Israeli citizens living, day to day, in fear and under constant threat of sudden violence against themselves and their families.

Video- Gaza floats out to sea