Saperstein: Lights—a symbol of freedom and hope.
You shall make no covenant with them and their gods. They shall not remain in your land, lest they cause you to sin against Me; for you will serve their gods - and it will prove a snare to you.
In his essay, “The Legacy of the Maccabees,” Dr. Shaye Cohen writes: “From the perspective of world history and Jewish history, the Hasmonean (Maccabean) revolt was epoch making.
Saperstein: “It is shameful that the United States chose not to be a part of the first UN General Assembly declaration condemning state-sanctioned human rights abuses against LGBT people”
Israel is the new frontier of Reform Judaism. Since the 1990s the number of Progressive/Reform congregations and minyanim has doubled from 15 to 30, many of them served by native Israeli rabbis ordained at our Movement seminary in Jerusalem. Five thousand families send their children to Reform-affiliated schools, and last year a record 50,000 Israelis attended Progressive High Holy Day services throughout the country.
"Dedication;" the joyous eight-day celebration during which Jews commemorate the victory of the Macabees over the armies of Syria in 165 B.C.E. and the subsequent liberation and rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem.