Tagged Shema

OP-ED Why Jewish day school students should recite the Pledge of Allegiance

Students at an elementary school in Portland, Maine, reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, March 25, 2015. (Gabe Souza/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH (JTA) — As a U.S. immigrant and a parent, I’m somewhat fanatical about my kids’ appreciation for their citizenship. Last year I organized what I hope will be an annual second-grade field trip to our local swearing-in ceremony for new American citizens. As a result of that experience,… Read more »

Reporter’s Notebook: One in 800,000 at Rav Ovadia’s funeral

Hundreds of thousands of mourners attended the funeral procession of Shas spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef who was buried at the Sanhedriya cemetery on Oct. 7, 2013. (Yaakov Naumi/Flash90)

JERUSALEM (JTA) — I didn’t need to ask directions. Stepping out of the Jerusalem Central Bus Station, I saw them, men in hats and coats walking together slowly, a steady stream moving  east along one of Jerusalem’s central thoroughfares to the funeral of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef. At 5 p.m.,… Read more »

Roots in heaven: the upside down tree

Rabbi Israel Becker

“Shema Yisroel, Listen Israel!” are the first words uttered by the Kohane, or Jewish priest, in his inspirational speech to the soldiers of Israel before going into battle (Deuteronomy 20:2-3). The purpose of these words was to capture each soldier’s attention. The great medieval French Torah commentator, Rashi (Rabbi… Read more »