The Haredi Woman Helping Houston With Psychological Aid & Other Orthodox Jews in the News

Actually, Modesty is About Empowerment, Not Oppression
The correct statement would be that modesty isn’t about patriarchy, but fashion is. If a woman really wants to exercise her power, she will choose who and when and where to expose her most precious and powerful physical self to, rather than putting it all on display.

Conan in Israel
Conan O’Brien’s trip to Israel saw him rubbing shoulders with many religious Jews. From Jeff Seidel’s gifting him a siddur, to his experience at Aish HaTorah and the Kotel, Conan left as much on an impression on the frum population of Israel as they left on him.

Great Big Story: Aaron Levitz
Aaron Levitz is far, far more than an ex-pat — the New York native moved to Uzhhorod, Ukraine to help revive the town’s historic Jewish community that was largely lost after World War II. How? Well, the sweetest way possible. He opened the Brooklyn Bakery.

Into the Eye of the Storm: The Jewish Heroes of Hurricane Harvey
With record-setting downpours and flooding taking even seasoned Houstonians by surprise, hundreds of people are being rescued by both public forces and private citizens from upper stories of homes heavily submerged in floodwaters. Officials estimate that 30,000 people will be left temporarily homeless by the storm, including most of the Jewish community.

An Orthodox Jewish Woman Takes the Helm of Chicago Divinity School
The new dean of the University of Chicago Divinity School – a former nurse and union activist who became a nationally respected bioethicist and a professor in multiple fields — is an Orthodox Jew. She observes the sacred space and time of Sabbath, declining work from sunset Friday to sunset Saturday, and keeping kosher, the ancient Jewish dietary laws.

Since Finding God, Band Chillent Doesn’t Need to Get Stewed to Feel High
The Jewish predilection for jam bands has long been chronicled, even if anecdotally — so much so that penitent musician Sruli Broocker says he wishes he had a dollar for every person who became attracted to the Hasidic way of life after spending their youth fraternizing, finding themselves, and discovering God while following bands like Phish or The Grateful Dead around the country. “Somehow their summers in RVs and muddy festival campgrounds, listening to transcendental guitar and bass lines, helped prepare them to one day travel the windy pathways of Hasidism,” says Broocker. At least, that’s what it did for him, in addition to helping inspire the formation of his band Chillent (chulent, but chill).

This Charedi Medic Pioneered Psychological First Aid in Israel. Now She’s Helping Houston.
Jerusalem therapist and head of the Psychotrauma Unit of United Hatzalah, Miriam Ballin is the kind of person who takes the initiative: despite resistance from her Charedi Orthodox community, she became a medic and launched a pacesetting psychological first aid unit. She was not just going to stand idly by while Tropical Storm Harvey flooded her native Houston, so on Wednesday evening, Ballin left her husband to watch their five young children and headed to southeast Texas, where she and six other Israeli mental health professionals will help locals cope with the flooding.

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