Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter

There’s No Place Like Home

Binyamin Rose

It was a deal that some say never should have been made and it may well be the last of its kind, but the prisoner swap that sprung Gilad Shalit from captivity to freedom after more than five years in a Hamas dungeon in Gaza uplifted and unnerved a nation that is no stranger to the trauma of trying to reconcile opposing and often highly emotional views. What cannot be forgotten is that the hardest of adjustment of all belongs to Gilad Shalit himself.

 

Ocean of Glass

David Damen, Belgium

It was to have been a day of rejoicing with the Torah. Instead, the dazed members of Antwerp’s Portuguese Israelite Synagogue awoke to discover their shul in ruins, destroyed by the blast of a powerful bomb. Thirty years later, members of the kehillah recall both the pain of that horrifying day and their subsequent efforts to rebuild.

 

The Wizard of Words

Barbara Bensoussan

While Jews are rarely at a loss for words, not many of us can rattle off an obscure word’s definition, etymology, and pronunciation. But Sol Steinmetz, who passed away last fall, was such a person — a true “lexical supermaven” who also never forgot what it meant to be a mentsch.

 

A Tale of Art and Faith

Tamar Levine

Master artist Shimon Levi is a familiar figure in his Bucharim neighborhood, where he embosses the images of our gedolim in shades of gold and silver in his modest studio. But though his artwork is well known, few know the details of his life — a fascinating story that began in a town in Spain and took him on a voyage on the deep blue sea, before planting him firmly in the city he loves best of all, Jerusalem.

ad
 
We’re In It Together
Rabbi Moshe Grylak Every person makes the world complete
Harvard Rejects Learn their Lesson
Yonoson Rosenblum SAT scores aren’t human decency scores
Now That We Know
Eytan Kobre “I think the Internet is broken”
What’s Your Spacesuit?
Rabbi Henoch Plotnik How to remember who you are
Not the Best Idea
Jacob L. Freedman Where ethics and friendship sometimes clash
The Postdate Blues
Libi Astaire Tickets to Financial Ruin
Man Without a Name
Rabbi Ron Yitzchok Eisenman “Ron?! There’s no such name!”
DNA Today
Faigy Peritzman Good family dynamics create deep-seated virtues
Getting to Know You
Sarah Chana Radcliffe Channels to get acquainted with your family
Stepping Stones
Mrs. Shani Mendlowitz How a stumbling block becomes a stepping stone
Professional Organizer: Part IV
D. Himy & Zivia Reischer Create your own mnemonics to remember information