Volume 39 Number 31
                 Produced: Fri May 16  6:17:02 US/Eastern 2003

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Another rabbi charged with fraud
Conservative and Orthodox Shuls in 1960's
         [Ben Katz]
Drisha Annual Dinner; Summer Programs
         [Freda B Birnbaum]
False Witnesses
         [Russell J Hendel]
Sources on Workers
         [Russell J Hendel]
Summer Programs sponsored by Nishmat
         [Freda B Birnbaum]


From: <halevi@...>
Date: Thu, 8 May 2003 10:53:05 -0500
Subject: Another rabbi charged with fraud

Shalom, All:

	Once again I read a newspaper story about a rabbi (with a previous criminal
record!) charged with fraud. Those who are interested in the name can find
it in the May 8 Chicago Tribune or Chicago Sun-Times. I won't post the name
here because some people, rather than focusing on the alleged crime and
how to prevent it, will carp that I'm "motzee shaym ra," or engaging in
"lashon hara" (loosely translated as "slander").
	The particulars, to quote the Trib, are that "A former Chicago rabbi with
a criminal record was among six people who have been indicted on charges
they obtained more than $2 million by filing fraudulent tax returns mostly
in the names of deceased people."  Also charged were the rabbi's son and
another person with a Hebrew name, among others.
	What can we do about this? They're not only massive khilullay HaShem (desecrations
of God's name) -- this minority taints the majority of us who are honest.
	For starts, we can intensely pressure every yeshiva to do the
	1. Teach musar (ethics) that focuses precisely on such criminal acts. Pound
home the fact that yeshiva people will be in the real world, and its temptations
are not just sex, drugs and rock 'n roll, but shady, quasi-legal and downright
criminal acts.
	2. Use actual case examples of what these temptations are. Name names of
convicted rabbis.
	3. Warn every high school and college/smicha student that if they ever
are convicted, the yeshiva will name these people in the beit medrash and
also name them in alumni mailings.
	I hope this painful posting -- I went to yeshiva with this criminal rabbi
-- will stir useful discussion. More importantly, I hope m-j readers will
pressure their yeshivot to enact preventive education and, yes, punishment.

Yeshaya (Charles Chi) Halevi


From: Ben Katz <bkatz@...>
Date: Tue, 13 May 2003 09:30:07 -0500
Subject: Re: Conservative and Orthodox Shuls in 1960's

>From: Batya Medad <ybmedad@...>
>       basically an "Orthodox" service with mixed seating.  At the
>       F.J.C. it wasn't even that mixed.  The synagogue was divided by 3
>       aisles into 4

>Holliswood Jewish Center in Queens also had that in the '60's.  But at
>the same time in the mid-west USA the orthodox shuls frequently had
>mixed seating.  I remember stories of NCSY events where the dovening
>couldn't be with the congregation.  (There's at least one lurker on mj
>who can give us more info on that.)

         The phenomenon that Batya is referring to (which I was not that
aware of before moving to Chicago) is Traditional synagogues.
Apparantly Rav Regensberg from the Skokie Yeshivah allowed "American"
(ie mixed) seating as long as shuls maintained their Orthodox
affiliation and rituals (eg duchaning) to combat the rising popularity
of the Conservative movement in the 50's and 60's.  I do not think it
has been systematically studied, but my reading of the present day
situation is that, from an Orthodox perspective, this leniency was an
unqualified success.  All of the Traditional synagogues that I am
familiar with have mechitza minyanim "downstairs" mainly populated by
the children of the original members who continue to daven "upstairs",
and everyone seems to get along.  Some shuls even have different
upstairs and downstairs rabbis who give each other the appropriate

To: Freda B Birnbaum <fbb6@...>

From: Freda B Birnbaum <fbb6@...>
Subject: Drisha Annual Dinner; Summer Programs 

I'm passing this on for Drisha Institute.  Their programs are excellent
and I've learned a lot from them.

Freda Birnbaum

---------- Forwarded message ----------

Drisha Annual Dinner on May 18
Drisha Institute for Jewish Education will honor Elga and Stephen
Stulman at its dinner on Sunday, May 18th. The dinner includes an hour
of Torah Study. This year's theme is Great Teachers in Our Tradition,
with classes led by Naphtali Harcsztark, Esther Krauss, Haskel Lookstein
and David Silber on Rav Kook, Sarah Schneirer, Nehama Leibowitz and
Rabbi J. B. Soloveitchik. To contribute to Drisha and for dinner
reservations contact <inquiry@...> or phone (212) 595-0307.

Pre-Shavuot Tikkun on May 27
Drisha once again is co-sponsoring with Ma'yan a pre-Shavuot Tikkun on
Tuesday, May 27. The theme is Women and Power: Then and Now. For further
information and event registration,

Drisha Summer Programs begin June 9

Three-Week Summer Institute, June 9-27
Once again, Drisha has a full array of summer programs for women of all
ages. The Three-Week Summer Institute offers courses on two levels in
Talmud, Bible, and Jewish Law. For course descriptions and an
application, http://www.drisha.org/programs/summer_full_june.htm.
Continuing Education evening courses during the same three-week period,
June 9 - 27, are offered on a variety of subjects including Blechs,
Plattehs and Crockpots - an overview of the issues and requirements for
eating hot foods on Shabbat - taught by Tamar Tanner. Two courses are
open to women and men: Parashat HaShavua taught by Wendy Amsellem, and
Psyche and Soul taught by Yitzchak Schechter. Course descriptions and
registration forms are on line.

Five-Week Summer Institute, June 30-August 1
The Five-Week Summer Institute offers morning courses in Talmud and
Biblical Hebrew, and afternoon classes in Jewish Law, Bible, Philosophy,
and Midrash. For full courses descriptions and registration information,
http://www.drisha.org/programs/summer_full_july.htm. Continuing
Education courses during this five-week period are offered during the
day and evening. Daytime classes include Jonah taught by Rachel
Friedman, Parashat HaShavua with David Silber, and Daniel with Shalom
Holtz. Evening classes include Rambam vs. Ramban taught by Joshua
Schreier and the Development of Halakha with Rachel Dulitz. Three
courses are open to women and men: Demons and Deities taught by Deena
Grant, Eichah with Jonathan Stein, and Maasei Chachamim (Tales of our
Sages) with David Goshen. For the balance of this exciting program,
course descriptions and registration information,

Summer High School Program - June 30 - July 31
The Summer High School Program, June 30 - July 31, offers courses in
Talmud, Bible, Jewish Law, and Parshanut (study of biblical
commentators) along with fun activities like Shakespeare-in-the-Park,
Boating and Sports. Course descriptions and registration information
http://www.drisha.org/programs/summer_high.htm or contact Miriam
Udel-Lambert, Director, Summer High School Program:

We have many wonderful programs coming very soon and look forward to
your participation!

Please feel free to contact me with any questions <jtenzer@...>

Shabbat Shalom, Judy


From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@...>
Date: Tue, 13 May 2003 09:10:01 -0400
Subject: RE: False Witnesses

Yair Horowitz in v39#19 asks 3 questions about false witnesses.  It
turns out that 2 of these 3 questions are directly answered in Jewish
law. (Citations come from the Rambam)

QUESTION 1: When proving witnesses false do we eg suppose that they
could fly from US to Israel in a half hour by some type of miracle.

ANSWER 1: This is EXPLICITLY discussed in Laws of witnesses, Chapter 19,
Paragraph 1. We may indeed convict witnesses as false and dont suspect
that a miracle enabled them to travel long distances.

COMMENT 2: Yair expresses doubt whether witnesses and warning are needed
in murder cases.

ANSWER 2: See Laws of Monetary Torts 8:13 for an explicit statement that
even liability for torts are not dependent on what happened in the real
world(circumstantial evidence) but rather on testimony. For another
statement see Laws of Witnesses 5:1 which cites the Biblical verse
Dt19-15 (or Dt17-06) that testimony is needed.

It is explained that the purpose of testimony is to prevent what we call
in English law a temporary insanity plea. In other words we have to rule
out that the person lost his temper and killed without thinking of
consequences. While this is prohibited such a person would not receive a
death penalty. Therefore we require the witnesses to warn the person;
furthermore, the person must (verbally) accept the warning and then
immediately commit the crime (that is: He says, I know this is wrong and
subject to a death penalty and then commits the murder). Otherwise we
suspect that he may have lost his temper and wasnt fully willful.

COMMENT 3: Would we execute a murderer if the deceased was resurrected
ANSWER 3: Yes the death penalty is not due to the lack of life of the
murdered but rather to emotional anguish at the time of death or to the
descecration of the Divine image.

Russell Jay Hendel; http://www.RashiYomi.com/


From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@...>
Date: Tue, 13 May 2003 09:11:58 -0400
Subject: Sources on Workers

Aryieh Lebowitz requests sources on workers.

Actually Judaism is one of the most pro-worker religions.

Allow me to just give 3 examples spanning such diverse areas as reward
and punishment, legislation and broad scope of terms

Example 1: The Bible explicitly states that worker anguish justifies the
punishment of bosses (See Dt24-15) Rambam Laws of Hiring 11:2 compares
worker abuse to murder based on a BIblical verse)

Example 2: Rabbinically the courts bent over backwards & judged
favorably for workers. Thus Rambam Hiring 11:6 points out that where
there is a dispute whether the worker has been paid or not (but there
are witnesses to the original worker contract) then the law bent over
backwards and allowed the worker to swear and take his pay (Normally:
Claims must be proven or the defendant swears and is exempt--in this
case however the worker is believed without further proof)

Example 3: Jewish law uses broad scopes of definitions to defend
workers. For example the Chafetz Chaiim in his book LOVE OF CHESED
points out that landlords are workers (no different than plumbers and
electricians). More specifically if a landlord is not paid on time than
a Biblical prohibition has been violated (even though you eventually pay
him). (In passing many non-jews that I do business with are surprised to
hear that the Bible mandates prompt payments to workers).

Hope the above helps

Russell Jay Hendel; http://www.RashiYomi.com/


From: Freda B Birnbaum <fbb6@...>
Subject: Summer Programs sponsored by Nishmat 

I've been asked to post this on behalf of Nishmat.  They offer very
high-quality stuff, so check it out!

Freda Birnbaum

---------- Forwarded message ----------

[...] The Symposium for Health Care Professionals is a first-ever, so far
as we can tell.

Summer Study in Jerusalem

This summer, Nishmat will once again offer a variety of exceptional
programs - study opportunities for women at diverse levels and with varied

These include:

 Yarchei Kallah Three-Week Summer Study - Tuesday, July 1- Monday, July
21, at Nishmat.  Explore "Women's Relationships and Women's Lives." 
English-speakers at all levels - beginners, intermediate and advanced - of
all ages and backgrounds can once again take a three-week odyssey through
the Jewish sources in ways that will challenge them and provide the tools
for future learning. An intensive immersion in superb Torah learning in a
religious-Zionist environment.

 An International Symposium for Physicians and other Healthcare
Professionals WHERE WOMEN'S HEALTH & HALACHA MEET: An In-Depth Study of
the Intersection of Modern Medicine & Traditional Sources - Monday, July 7
- Thursday, July 10 at the Sheraton Plaza Hotel, Jerusalem.  Attendees
will participate in individualized text-based learning, classes, and
discussions with Nishmat's Yoatzot Halacha (Halachic Consultants), rabbis,
and physicians on the interface of Jewish law (halacha), women's health
care and current medical technology. Topics will include fertility,
contraception, menopause and prenatal testing.  (CME credits applied for.)

 Talmud Week - Sunday, July 20-Wednesday, July 23 at the Dan Pearl Hotel
in Jerusalem. An intensive four-day immersion in Talmud conducted in
Hebrew for Jewish studies teachers and other women with excellent Jewish
studies backgrounds who have never before studied Talmud.  Students will
learn basic tools of Talmud study and will participate in shiurim,
chavruta study, and one-on-one tutorials with Fellows from Nishmat's
Machon Gavoha.

 Tanach Institute - Sunday, July 27-Thursday, July 31. Nishmat's popular
annual Tanach Institute, conducted in Hebrew, will focus on "Women in
Tanach," offering an exceptional opportunity to study with some of
Israel's leading Bible scholars.

For further information, registration, and tuition, check out the Nishmat
website at: www.nishmat.net or e-mail: <nishmat@...> or
AFNishmat.aol.com or Call American Friends of Nishmat, 212-983-6975.

In Canada:

9th Annual Toronto Yarchei Kallah- Tuesday, July 22-Thursday, July 24.
"King David and His Sons" will be the topic for this popular study program
taught by Nishmat Dean Chana Henkin.  Fur further info: Canadian Friends
of Nishmat, 416-789-4883, or <sachnovitz@...>

More Nishmat good stuff:

These two online courses are available year-round.  Harriet Schimel

NishmatOnline Offers Two E-Courses
 NishmatOnline enables Jews all over the world to enter Nishmat's bet
midrash and study, day or night, under the guidance of prominent Nishmat
educators. The interactive and challenging Torah e-courses can be accessed
from any computer.  Currently, two 20-week courses are available.  Sign-up at
any time by logging on: www.nishmat.net. Tuition is $50 per course.

NishmatOnline e-Courses
Rabbi Hanan Schlesinger
Course: "Lives in the Balance"
Beginner/ Intermediate Level.
This Talmud course is designed to develop the students' skills in
independently reading and understanding Talmudic texts.

Rabbi Reuven Taragin
Course: Ketuvim: Kohelet, Iyov and Tehillim
(Writings: Ecclesiastes, Job and Psalms)
Intermediate/Advanced Level.
These three Biblical books focus on questions surrounding the meaning of life
and the nature of man's relationship with G-d. Study is supplemented by
excerpts from Talmud, Midrash, and later sources.


End of Volume 39 Issue 31