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Episode 4: “In Search of Meaningful Prayer”

“The stones remember the prayers and the tears” explained the shul gabbai as he refused to allow the floor of his synagogue to be dismantled and used in a grand mosaic floor installation at Hadassah Hospital.

Today, this story’s protagonists are gone, but the stones remain – and they tell a story of authentic prayer. Watch the fourth episode in Rabbi Kenneth Brander’s powerful new series, “If These Stones Could Speak” about the hidden messages from our past that exist throughout the Land of Israel.

This week’s episode is dedicated in memory of the victims of this Shabbat’s terror attack who lost their lives outside of a different synagogue in Jerusalem. May all of the injured victims have a refua shlayma, a quick and full recovery.

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Episode 3: “Elevating the Mundane”

How did Napoleon’s royal coat get from the snowy plains of Russia to the “Beit Israel” synagogue in Yemin Moshe, Jerusalem – the first shul to be built outside the Old City walls?

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Episode 2: “A Community Built by Unity”

In Jerusalem, there’s a well-known Orthodox synagogue whose land was donated by the Conservative movement, while its first Torah scroll was dedicated by none other than Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook, Israel’s first Chief Rabbi. Would such a cooperation be possible today? 

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Episode 1: “A Matter of Trust”

Why was there a large oven built behind the “Hagra” Synagogue in Jerusalem’s Shaarei Chesed neighborhood? Does the fact that each family has its own oven today distance us from one another? And how can we recreate a cohesive, trusting community atmosphere?

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“If These Stones Could Speak” is a powerful new video series following  OTS President and Rosh HaYeshiva Rabbi Kenneth Brander as he explores off the beaten track sites throughout Israel.  In each week’s short video, Rabbi Brander will bring to life long-forgotten stories and uncover hidden messages from the past that will help us build a better, more just and more unified future.

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Historical Moment for Women’s Torah Scholarship In a great moment for Jewish history in general and the history of Jewish women in particular, 13 women from the Susi Bradfield Women’s Institute of Halakhic Leadership (WIHL) — OTS’s unparalleled, full-time learning initiative for the most outstanding and committed female scholars — are currently preparing to take …

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Lindenabum-Lod students greeting Ukrainian Refugees at Ben Gurion Airport

It’s not just about Ukraine, it’s about us By Rabbi Dr. Yakov Nagen | March 15, 2022 The invasion of Ukraine challenges us to ask questions about ourselves. What is the role and place of Jewish people in the broader story of humanity? What is the role of the state of Israel in a global …

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shofar bapark Tel Aviv

Bringing the Holidays to the People From Rosh Hashana through Sukkot, as Jews of all backgrounds seek meaning and opportunities to connect, the Jewish cultural coordinators of OTS’s Yachad Program for Jewish Identity run a range of inviting events which attract tens of thousands of people of all ages. “A secular couple came to hear …

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Inspecting the damage of a fire

Am Yisrael Chai – The People of Israel Lives “I chose to spend this year learning Torah specifically in the city of Lod because here, I can learn Torah in a family-like atmosphere and really be part of what’s happening in Israel – even in times of trouble ,” explained Carmel Levi, 18, a student …

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Working Men and Women: Vocational Training Restored as Israel Emerges from Covid Pandemic Many young adults were delighted not to have to go to work during the COVID pandemic, but the young men and women of the Norm and Elaine Brodsky Darkaynu Programs anxiously awaited the all-clear announcement as health regulations were lifted across Israel …

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Darkaynu at machanaim

Feeling at Home Students from the Elaine and Norm Brodsky Yeshivat Darkaynu program have been welcomed warmly into their new ‘home away from home’ on OTS’s Beren Campus for Men. Student Yochanon Gittleson: “I was worried that because of corona, the program might not happen this year. I’m so happy to be here in Israel, …

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