Giving JCCs the tools to “do” Israel

Israel Tool Kit Page 19

This story was originally printed in the Summer 2014 issue of the JCC Circle. It started with a kernel of an idea: How can JCCs increase their engagement with Israel, both for the institution and for the people it serves? The result was Israel & Your JCC, an all-in-one guide to finding ways for the […]

Taking on the mantle of leadership


This story was originally printed in the Summer 2014 issue of the JCC Circle. What does it mean to lead a JCC in the 21st century? Fifty-one participants from 31 JCCs in the Esther Leah Ritz Emerging JCC Leaders Institute spent their time at the Biennial exploring that question—and coming up with their own answers—during […]

Sunny, with a 100% chance for inspiration


This story was originally printed in the Summer 2014 issue of the JCC Circle. Beginning on March 28 and running through April 1, the JCCs of North America Biennial convention attracted nearly 700 people from around the globe, including budding leaders in our Esther Leah Ritz Emerging JCC Leaders track, U.S. military chaplains present for […]

Can JCCs find a lesson in hate?


This story was originally printed in the Summer 2014 issue of the JCC Circle. Moving beyond the Kansas City Shooting The afternoon was shaping up to be a busy one for the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City and its President and CEO Jacob Schreiber. Actors were backstage, preparing for a final performance of […]

Update from JCC Israel Center


Operation Protective Edge — Day 28 Yesterday Israel buried four of her best sons, courageous soldiers, our heroes. They were killed in the Rafah battle on Friday. Among them is 2nd Lt. Hadar Goldin, who was declared dead on Saturday after Hamas had claimed to have kidnapped him. Hadar’s death brings the total of Israeli […]

Israel at the J, even under duress


Since the kidnapping in June of Eyal Yifrach, Gil-ad Sha’er and Naftali Fraenkel, JCCs and their camps have been grappling with ways to handle news coming from Israel. As Hamas rockets launched toward Israeli cities increased, and Israel launched a ground war in Gaza, JCCs have come up with a variety of creative ways to […]

Israeli emissaries at US summer camps wonder how best to serve

times of israel photo

Former members of elite IDF units frustrated by toasting marshmallows while cohort called up to Operation Protective Edge By Howard Blass PALMER, Massachusetts — At Camp Ramah in New England this weekend, Israeli emissary Yakov described feeling very far away from what’s happening in Israel while sitting in the idyllic Massachusetts forest surrounding his Jewish sleep-away summer camp. […]

Update from JCC Israel Center

Hadar Goldin was kidnapped on August 1 during a cease fire.

Operation Protective Edge — Day 25 On the 25th day of Operation Protective Edge, I was planning to write something about our war routine. However nothing about today is routine. After going to sleep with the sound of the siren in the background, we woke up this morning to once again learn that five more […]

Update from JCC Israel Center

Students in the IDC "war room"

Operation Protective Edge — Day 24 In the past 24 hours, 85 Israeli soldiers were wounded in Gaza and Hamas continues to fire at Israeli cities. The operation continues, even as we attempt to a cease-fire. This afternoon Hamas fired more rockets into several areas in central Israel. One fell near a school and another […]

Parashat D’varim (Deuteronomy 1:1-3:22)

“The Lord our God spoke to us at Chorev, saying, ‘You have stayed long enough at this mountain.’” (Deuteronomy 1: 6) Parashat D’varim opens the fifth and final book of the Torah (also called D’varim and known in English as Deuteronomy). D’varim comprises five speeches by Moses who begins by reprising the desert experience (which […]

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