Archive for February, 2011
Please note: I dedicate this article, Practice Makes Perfect, to my Grandmother of blessed memory: Sylvia (Sima Simcha) Kohn. I believe it is fitting that her Yarhzheit is in the month of Adar, a month in which we are instructed to increase and exude joy. She was a woman who was known by friends and family to truly live each day to its fullest extent. In both name and spirit she personified Simchas HaChaim! Savta, you continue to inspire me! May your memory be forever blessed!
Back in my days of study at Ner Israel Rabbinical College, I would spend some of my free time (a.k.a. Bein HaSedarim) exercising or reading. One of the most revealing books that I read during this time was: Jerusalem Jems: Jerusalem’s Top Educator’s Talk About Issues that Concern You Most. This easy to read work, was compiled by Rabbi Menachem Nissel (author of Women and Tefillah: Perspectives, Laws, and Customs
and Rabbinic Resource for NCSY) from the various articles that appeared for several years on JemSem.org. What I enjoyed then and now about Jerusalem Jems, to the extent that I even highlighted certain pages, was the frankness of the Question and Answer chapter as well as the fact that it was not written from one perspective! Rather, the reader can read the thoughts of anyone ranging from Rabbi Noach Orlowek to Mrs. Chana Silver and yet walk away with clear answers and Hashkafos to contemporary issues—regardless of if you were a Seminary Girl or a Yeshiva Bochur!
Today, I am happy to call many of the writers in this book—colleagues of mine!
What’s more, I was pleasantly surprised when I was asked to be a part of JemSem.org for the month of Adar 1 2011, and write the lead column called: “Chizuk from Yerushalayim!”
If you’ve never checked out JemSem.org I encourage you to visit this site. The JemSem.org website is massive. Whether one opts to agree or disagree with the articles that appear on the site, you could spend hours, perhaps days, discovering more and more about Judaism. On a monthly basis, the site features a “Chizuk from Yerushalayim” column, as well as the popular “Dear Chana” section which offers advice on Shidduchim to other matters that are relevant to young Jewish women. Plus, the “Ask a Shayla!” and the “I Didn’t Know That!” sections always seem to address timely issues and provide a wealth of information.
While I wish that JemSem.org would have included all of the footnotes to the original article that I wrote, I understand their editorial decision to remove them.