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Baltimore, MD - July 18, 2024 - The Sylvia Rosenblatt Hebrew UnSchool at Moses Montefiore Anshe Emunah is dedicated to fostering spiritual growth and a love of Judaism in children of all ages and from all backgrounds. Please reach out to discuss if we can help contribute to your child’s Jewish education. The early bird special lasts until the end of this week. Come on over and find out what all the excitement is about. Click on the graphic below for more information.
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Baltimore, MD – July 21, 2024  - It is with regret that Baltimore Jewish Life (BJL) informs the community of the petira of Sara Cohen, a’h, mother of Estie (Chaim) Kahn, Leah Klein, Mordy Cohen, and Aryeh Cohen. Shiva in Baltimore will be observed from noon on Wednesday, July 24, 2024, through Friday at 5:00PM at 2325 Blackberry Road, Baltimore, MD, 21209Visiting times: 10:00AM-12:30PM, 1:00PM-6:00PM and 7:00Pm to 10:00PM.  Friday 10:00AM -4:00PM Bila HaMaves LaNetzach…
It’s a sad reality that, when travelling alone, women often have to take extra steps to keep themselves safe. The onus shouldn’t be on women, and we wish it wasn’t this way. But now, one airline is making it easier to calm anxieties when it comes to flying, becoming the first to allow women to request not to be seated next to a man. A low-cost airline based in India, IndiGo, has announced a pioneering new policy allowing women to view the gender of the passengers sitting around them before booking. They’ll be able to choose to sit next to a woman if they’d prefer, which they’ll be able to do by viewing the seat plan ahead of flying. Where women are booked on, their seats will flash pink – yes, s...
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is meeting on Thursday with President Biden and later — separately — with Vice President Harris as the nine-month-long war in Gaza continues to remain a political liability for Democrats heading into a presidential election. Netanyahu’s visit comes at a critical moment in American politics: with four months to the election, the White House is eager to secure a cease-fire deal to end Israel’s war with Hamas, which began last October with the militant group’s attack on Israel that killed 1,200 people. Israel’s response has killed 39,000 Palestinians, a significant proportion of them civilians, according to the Ministry of Health in Gaza. A potential deal to end the conflict will undoubtedly be a focus of...
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Baltimore, MD – July 23, 2024 - It is with regret that Baltimore Jewish Life (BJL) informs the community of the petira of Yosef Hershel Efron, z’l, father of Menashe Efron.  The levayah will be held in Kansas City, MO, Wednesday, July 24, 2024  @ 2:30 PM Central time / 3:30 PM Eastern time Click here to watch livestream.  Meeting ID: 810 0455 2784 Passcode: 653112 Shiva in Baltimore will be observed through Tuesday morning beginning with Mincha on Thursday, July 25 at 2503 Summerson Rd., Baltimore, MD, 21209 Visiting hours 10:00AM-12 Noon, 1:00PM – 4:00PM, after maariv - 7:15PM - 9:00 pm Minyanim: Mincha/Maariv: Thursday, Sunday, Monday 6:35pm (Plag) Erev Shabbos Mincha: 7:00PM Motzaei Shabbos: 9:05PM Shacharis (Vasikin): Friday, Sun...
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After more than 50 years, Southwest Airlines is getting rid of its unique open seating model and will now assign seats. The airline made the move to meet the evolving preferences of customers who say they want seat assignments. Southwest also said it conducted testing that included live and more than 8 million simulation-based boarding trials before making the change. Research from the airline shows 80% of Southwest customers and 86% of potential customers prefer an assigned seat. And when customers opt to stop flying with Southwest in favor of a competitor, the No. 1 reason they cite leaving is open seating. The major shift comes as the airline faces mounting pressure to increase revenue. With open seating, travelers would board according to their boarding group and seat selection was...
Baltimore, MD - July 24, 2024  - One of the most special features of our new Mikdash Mi'at is our state of the art Mikvaos. The women's Mikvah can be accessed through a private entrance from the back (west side) of the building, as well as conveniently from inside the back hallway. We feel privileged to house both a women's Mikvah and men's Mikvah in our shul building that will iy"H be utilized for many holy and pure purposes. The Mikvaos are a crucial element of the Torah-based life cycle experience one can obtain in our holy new building - from learning to davening, gathering, celebrating, and adhering to family purity laws. Enjoy a virtual tour of the Mikvah entrance as well as updated aerial views of our beautiful new building. With Hashem's help, we look...
Parsha Hashavua
Parshas Balak - Propaganda

Tomorrow, 14 Tammuz, is the 37h yahrzeit of R' Yaakov Yitzchack (ben Yehuda Leib HaLevi) Ruderman, zt"l, the first Rosh HaYeshivah of Yeshivas Ner Yisroel. 

Sunday, 15 Tammuz, was the 21st yahrtzeit of my wife's grandmother, Mrs. Shirley Yeres, Chaya Shaindel bas Alexander HaLevi.

Tuesday, 17 Tammuz, is the 3rd yahrtzeit of my dear father, Reuven Pinchas ben Chaim Yaakov, a"h. As well, it is the 25th yahrzeit of R' Shmuel Yaakov (ben Yitzchok Matisyahu) Weinberg, zt"l, Rosh HaYeshiva of Ner Yisroel.

The shtikle is dedicated le'iluy nishmasam.

At the beginning of this week's parsha, we find that Moav is frightened of B'nei Yisrael because of what they did to Sichon. Some are bothered by the fact that B'nei Yisrael are commanded not to wage war with Moav. So, they need not have worried. However, it is unclear to me how exactly Moav would have known that. But I was once asked a more intriguing question concerning Balak's entire approach to B'nei Yisrael. Sichon met his demise only because he started up with B'nei Yisrael. B'nei Yisrael clearly had no intentions of war with Sichon and he was the one who came out and attacked. As long as Balak avoids a confrontation, what does he have to be afraid of? If he simply leaves B'nei Yisrael alone, his country is in no danger whatsoever.

At this point, I wish to advertise the recent release of the sefer Oneg LaShem which is posthumously authored by R' Moshe Juravel, zt”l, my son's fifth grade rebbe. He makes this question just that much stronger by pointing out that if you follow the path of B'nei Yisrael’s travels, they would have already passed Moav. They were well in their rear-view mirror at this point.

However, R' Juravel's point essentially invalidates an earlier answer I had suggested to this question: Perhaps what frightened Moav was that they observed that as soon as B'nei Yisrael requested a passage through Sichon's land, that is when everything started to fall apart for him. Indeed, Sichon started the war, but what was he supposed to do? How is a country supposed to see such a request as a friendly gesture? The way Balak saw it, as soon as B'nei Yisrael asks for permission to go through the land, it means trouble. Now, in the parsha we are not told that any such request was sent to Moav. However, in the haftara of Chukas (Shoftim 11:17) we find that messengers were sent to Moav as well with the same request. Perhaps the episode of Balak happened after these messengers were sent and that is why he became frightened. When Balak saw his nation following the same course of events as that of Sichon, he felt threatened and saw fit to take preemptive action.

However, there is a much simpler approach to Balak's actions which teaches a great lesson, one that is most fitting for current events. Perhaps Balak was simply misinformed and misguided. B'nei Yisrael's trouncing of Sichon's army ultimately had them looking like the aggressors. B'nei Yisrael began to be looked upon as a force of terror ripping through the region. Balak was not aware, or did not allow himself to be aware that B'nei Yisrael had no intentions of any involvement with him whatsoever. This whole parsha is therefore a clear example of ma'aseh avos siman labanim, a harbinger of events to follow for many generations. Throughout history, Jews have always been vilified on false pretenses. But in our days, it is most glaringly evident. After the Holocaust there was an atmosphere of pity for the Jewish people. But that only lasted for a fleeting moment. Israel has been blessed by HaShem with the strongest and most successful of armies. With the Divine gift of power and might, they have crushed their enemies to bitter defeat. But because of that, (in addition to pure unadulterated anti-Semitism,) we are looked upon as aggressors. Each war was a defensive battle but yet, we are looked upon as instigators and subsequently, occupiers. In sweeping, defensive attacks against terrorists, we are seen as terrorists ourselves. We defend ourselves against blatantly genocidal maniacs, only to be labeled ourselves as waging a genocide.  As we see in our parsha, this is old news. As the generations pass it is evident that the Jews will always be misunderstood and misjudged in the public eye.

Have a good Shabbos.

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“We saved this money for a rainy day. But, there’s a mabul happening!” These are the words that Reuven Wolf, renowned philanthropist shared at a Keren Olam HaTorah event. The emergency fundraising campaign initiated by the leading gedolim of Eretz Yisroel and Jewish philanthropists worldwide, Keren Olam HaTorah has marked this day to launch their unprecedented fundraising mission. After Israeli government budget cuts left yeshivos and kollelim with a $107 million deficit, over 50,000 bochurim and avreichim face an uncertain future. And that’s why Keren Olam HaTorah was created. Our gedolim's tireless efforts have already garnered an astounding $84 million in pledges, but we still face a shortfall of $23 million. This Wednesday, July 24th, our gedolim a...
Baltimore, MD – July 24, 2024 - 3:48PM - Tree maintenance on Greenspring Avenue between I-695 and Hillside has resulted in one lane being closed. Traffic will be alternating directions in the open lane. Expect delays.
SimchasSimchas Simcha
Baltimore, MD – July 2024 - Every Shabbos table offers every Jewish family an incredible opportunity by which they can share their joy for Shabbos, for Yiddishkeit and for HaShem with their children. Unfortunately, our schedules are hectic and many people don’t have the time to prepare themselves to utilize the Shabbos table to its fullest. Therefore, we at ACHIM created TableTalk as a pre-packaged talking points pamphlet which is attractive, fun and has something for everyone. Limited copies are distributed to many shuls on a weekly basis but they are snatched up very quickly. Get yours ASAP or click on the graphic below and print your own.What’s in it and what’s all the excitement about?TableTalk features:•    Weekly halachic dilemma creating l...
Baltimore, MD - July 24, 2024 - The best place in Maryland to plant roots for a lifetime is Silver Spring, according to Fortune’s new ranking of the nation’s 50 Best Places to Live for Families. In the analysis, Fortune said Silver Spring, which has a population of 81,977, moved up from the No. 3 spot on last year’s list to take the top seat this year. The Washington, D.C., suburb offers local charm with the convenience of city life, just six miles away from DC — a quick commute via the Washington Metro or MARC train. Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich said Fortune's ranking reflects what many residents already know: It's part of a community that supports families in every way possible. "Silver Spring's top ranking as ...
Nichum AveilimNichum Aveilim Aveilim
Baltimore, MD – July 24, 2024 -  BJL wishes a hearty Mazel Tov to Eliezer Hyatt & Chayala Ciment on their engagement. Mazel Tov Shmuel & Mindy Hyatt and Rabbi Elchanan & Leah Ciment Mazel Tov to grandparents Mrs. Sara (Rabbi David, Z’L) Hyatt, Mr. & Mrs. Jeffrey Silverberg, Mr. and Mrs. Perry Ciment and Rabbi & Mrs. Shmuel Glazer. יה"ר שיזכו לבנות בית נאמן בישראל. אמן!
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Baltimore, MD – July 23, 2024  - - It is with regret that Baltimore Jewish Life (BJL) informs the community of the petira of Lea Harris, a’h, mother of Danny (Shana) Harris and Caroline Harris (Elliot Caplan). The levaya will take place graveside tomorrow, Wednesday, July 24 at 2:00 at Har Sinai Cemetery, 11405 Garrison Forest Road. Shiva will be observed at 2801 Bartol Avenue, through Tuesday morning.  Minyanim:  Shacharis: Thursday, Friday, Monday and Tuesday - 7:00 am Shacharis: Sunday - 8:00 am Mincha/Maariv: Wednesday and Thursday - 8:10 pm Mincha/Maariv: Sunday and Monday  - 8:05 pm The family requests no visitors from 1:00-4:00 pm and after 10:00 pm
One week before a gunman attempted to kill former President Trump, he conducted a Google search for “how far away was Oswald from Kennedy,” a reference to Lee Harvey Oswald, who shot and killed President John F. Kennedy in 1963, according to FBI Director Christopher Wray. That same day, the shooter, Thomas Matthew Crooks, registered for Trump’s rally in Butler, Pa., Wray told the House Judiciary Committee Wednesday.  Wray said the FBI conducted an analysis of a laptop tied to Crooks and found that on July 6, “he became very focused” on Trump and the July 13 rally. “We’ve, just in the last couple days, found that . . . [the] laptop that the investigation ties to the shooter reveals that on July 6 he did a Google search ‘how far aw...
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The call to resign comes after Columbia decided to continue employing three deans who shared texts downplaying concerns about anti-Semitism at the school. Baltimore, MD - July 24, 2024  - A group of more than two thousand Jewish rabbis has recently called for the resignation or removal of Columbia University President Minouche Shafik. “Coalition for Jewish Values (CJV), representing over 2,500 traditional, Orthodox rabbis in American public policy, today called for Columbia President Minouche Shafik to resign or be fired by the Board of Trustees,” CJV announced on its website on July 11.The group cited Shafik’s mishandling of the text-messaging scandal that has plagued Columbia in recent weeks.The Columbia administration decided to continue empl...
Jerusalem, Israel - July 24, 2024  - In May, Israel announced a new requirement for visitors: an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) would be necessary for entry. As initially reported by Chaim V’Chessed, this new policy would mandate that visitors apply for an ETA before traveling to Israel. The ETA application process is already available on a non-mandatory basis for visitors from select countries, including the United States and Germany. The requirement was originally set to become mandatory on August 1, 2024. In a new development, the Interior Ministry has decided to delay the mandatory implementation of the ETA. This delay comes after numerous requests from airlines for more time to prepare for implementation of the process. The new effective date for the mand...
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