Two Calls to Make Before Shabbat Arrives 

Dear Friends,

As Shabbat approaches I wanted to reach out over social media and ask you to make two important calls- one to Senator Menendez and the other to Senator Booker. The former is simply a call of thanks. The latter is a call to action. 

Some background:

 A number of news outlets are reporting that a framework agreement with Iran may be signed as early as this weekend. All indications are that serious concessions are being made by the P5+1 to the Iranian regime. These include weakening demands for inspections, potentially lifting all sanctions immediately, and allowing Iran to continue to operate the Fordow nuclear facility. (This is an underground, heavily fortified facility at a previously undisclosed location.) It is imperative that Congress play its historically mandated role and participate in the political process in order to ensure that any deal signed is indeed the “good deal” spoken

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Welcoming Rabbi Allie Klein

Dear Friends,

It is with a great deal of  excitement that I am writing this email.

I am absolutely thrilled that, on July 1, Rabbi Alexandra (Allie) Klein will be joining the TSTI staff. Throughout the search process we were consistently impressed by the caliber of the students approaching rabbinic ordination. Rabbi Klein was, however, far and away the rabbi we hoped to engage and we are gratified that she has accepted our offer. 

A native of New Jersey, Rabbi Klein is a product of the Reform Movement and has extensive experience in Jewish Summer Camping, formal and informal education and much more. Her resume impressed the committee and the time we spent with her throughout the intensive interview process only served to solidify our first impressions. Our unanimous choice, Rabbi Klein immediately accepted our invitation. 

We welcome Rabbi Klein and her husband Adam Seidman to the TSTI community and …

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Alan M. Dershowitz In the WSJ- Worth Reading

The Appalling Talk of Boycotting Netanyahu
Congress has every right, and even an obligation, to hear the Israeli leader speak about the Iranian threat.
By Alan M. Dershowitz
Feb. 23, 2015 6:33 p.m. ET Read it at the WSJ

As a liberal Democrat who twice campaigned for President Barack Obama , I am appalled that some Democratic members of Congress are planning to boycott the speech of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on March 3 to a joint session of Congress. At bottom, this controversy is not mainly about protocol and politics—it is about the constitutional system of checks and balances and the separation of powers.

Under the Constitution, the executive and legislative branches share responsibility for making and implementing important foreign-policy decisions. Congress has a critical role to play in scrutinizing the decisions of the president when these decisions involve national security, relationships with allies and the threat of …

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Carol Paster Gets Punny at Holiday Happenings


Carol, Mindy and Cantor Moses join with young families to celebrate Tu Bi’Shvat and make soup for the soup kitchen.
And yes, from inside her pot Carol removed this kitchen utensil from her pot while singing…

“I have a little ladle…” She’s punny like that.…

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TSTI Members In Action- Helping Women and Girls. Period.

Our community is involved in so many important projects and organizations. And, in keeping with who TSTI members are, much of the time things fly under the radar. Every now and then however the good works done by TSTI members gets seen by many. Thats the case here with this NYTimes article writeen by TSTI member Jennifer Weiss-Wolf and detailing the work of Emma and Quinn Joy… also TSTI members.



IMG_4374-0.PNGJennifer Weiss-Wolf JANUARY 28, 2015

A friend recently laughed about the time she was unloading the groceries and absent-mindedly put a box of tampons in the freezer, leading her pre-teen daughter to inquire whether they worked better when cold. We all have our stories – ranging from the funny to the mildly embarrassing to the mortifying – that revolve around menstrual mishaps and messes.

But for the more than 40 million women in this country living in …

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First-Hand From Paris, a Reform Rabbi’s Perspective

This letter comes from Rabbi Tom Cohen. He heads a reform congregation in Paris. It was shared with my by TSTI member Ellen Lewis Rice who notes that she and TSTI Past-President Jay Rice met the Parisian Rabbi Cohen a few years ago when he led their group on a tour of the Marais and some other points of interest in Paris. He offers some first-hand thoughts about recent events and writes…

Dear Friends,

Please forgive me for this rather impersonal group letter, rather than a personal note to each one of you. Do know that given the time, I’d prefer otherwise!

That being said, it is truly amazing the tremendous number of phone calls, SMS, email messages, linkedin messages and facebook messages I have received since last Wednesday. How so very true is the Talmudic statement in Shevuot (39a) declaring, “Kol yisrael arevim zeh bazeh”, meaning ‘all of Israel …

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Hannukah Lights Day Four- Ron Gross’ Work with Friends of the IDF

IMG_3974-0.JPGOne way that my wife, Peggy, and I enjoy helping make a difference is through supporting the Friends of Israel Defense Forces. The “FIDF” helps the Israeli armed forces – the front line of defense who keep the State of Israel safe, who keep democracy alive and strong in the Middle East and who allow the Jews of the world to have a homeland where they are always welcome.

The Israel Defense Forces or “The IDF” is made up of men and women from all walks of life and from all parts of the Jewish world and whose mission it is to defend the existence, territorial integrity and sovereignty of the state of Israel, to protect the inhabitants of Israel and to combat all forms of terrorism which threaten daily life. Of interest to those in the United States, perhaps, is the fact that at any given time there are …

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This Times of Israel Story Is Truly Touching- Jewish couple names son after Druze cop killed in terror attack Read more: Jewish couple names son after Druze cop killed in terror attack


This is one of those stories that touches the heart. As the Times of Israel is reporting…

Zidan isn’t a name usually heard at a Jewish circumcision, but a New York couple gave their newborn son the moniker to honor a Druze policeman killed while responding to a terror attack on a Jerusalem synagogue last month.

Alexander Chester, a corporate real estate attorney, told The Times of Israel that he and his wife, Jennifer, a medical resident at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, wanted to make sure that Zidan Saif’s name would be perpetuated within the Jewish community, naming their son Yaakov Zidan.

Read more: Jewish couple names son after Druze cop killed in terror attack | The Times of Israel
Follow us: @timesofisrael on Twitter | timesofisrael on Facebook

Read the full post

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Important Read from Ari Shavit

Arei Shavit, author of My Promised Land, has penned an important piece about his perspective on the upcoming Israeli election. While those of us in the US won’t be voting it is an important insight into the Democratic process currently unfolding in the Jewish State and an interesting look at the debate taking place within Israeli society.…

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