Colors: Blue Color

The Coalition for Jewish Values (CJV), representing over 1000 traditional rabbinic leaders in matters of public policy, last week said statements of support for Rev. Al Sharpton from Senators (and Presidential candidates) Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren reflected “great insensitivity” towards the Jewish community. Following an attack on Sharpton from President Donald Trump, Harris claimed that Sharpton “has spent his life fighting for what’s right and working to improve our nation,” while Warren said he “has dedicated his life to the fight for justice for all.”

The Talmud (P’sachim 117a) states that there are ten types of songs/expressions in the Book of Psalms:  1) conducting (nitzuach), 2) melody (nigun), 3) musical accompaniment (mizmor), 4) song (shir), 5) praise (hallel), 6) prayer (t’filah), 7) blessing (brachah), 8) thanksgiving (hodaah), 9) praises (ashrei), and 10) “Praise God” (hallelukah).

The first Sunday of June was the annual Celebrate Israel Parade. Although it feels like a distant memory, its reverberations are still being felt. With over 40,000 marchers and even more spectators lining the streets, this year had to be one of the best parades. The energy was amazing, and the theme “Rak B’Yisrael” was a major reason why. Over 65 schools participated, and each was judged based on its presentation, enthusiasm, and overall appearance. Ezra Academy was recently informed that they were awarded third place in this year’s parade. Aside from the tremendous pride the school feels for this recognition, it is also accompanied by a monetary prize given by the JCRC, the organization that coordinates the parade.

To build a successful business, it is crucial to develop a network of relevant connections. Acquaintances become friends and friends become the people upon whom you rely and who rely upon you. Perhaps some of these individuals will inspire you or push you to do better. Perhaps some are mentors who will offer you bits of the wisdom they’ve acquired along their journey. Some will be peers with whom you can collaborate or share valuable connections. Some will become mentees, or people you can help lift up and advise. Fortunately, there are many business owners in a plethora of fields right here in our own communities. Next Wednesday night, August 7, we look forward to helping you expand your vital business network.

The YCQ (Yeshiva of Central Queens) Alumni Association is proud to announce that it is hosting its inaugural Alumni Basketball Game and Family Fun Day on Sunday, November 3, beginning at 11:00 a.m. It is hoped that this basketball game will become an annual event, generating much excitement among alumni who wish to renew relationships with both their elementary/middle school alma mater and former classmates/friends. This year’s event, as presently envisioned, will be limited to a single basketball game for alumni who are 22 years of age or older. If there is significant interest in registering for this game, a second and possibly even a third game that day will be added.

When I was a young yeshivah student, I came to study in Yeshiva Shaar HaTorah in Kew Gardens, Queens. One aspect that made attending this institution especially appealing to me was that at its head was Rabbi Zelig Epstein. Before knowing him personally, I knew he had studied in the Mir, back when it was in Poland, and that he was married to the great Rabbi Shimon Shkop’s granddaughter. I had also heard that he had attended the Yeshiva in Kelm, famed for its refinement of students’ character and commitment to Rabbi Yisrael Salanter’s musar movement. Having the privilege of being linked to all that, and especially being linked to a world that is no longer – pre-Holocaust Europe – was especially meaningful to me. And so I attended the Yeshiva, making a conscious effort to get every opportunity I can to spend time with Rabbi Epstein, or as he was known by so many: “Reb Zelig.”