Reclaiming My Legacy and My Hebrew Name: Morasha Kehilla

I recently started using my Hebrew name. My great-grandparents, Moshe and Kayla (Morris and Katy) Tanenbaum, for whom I’m named, came from religious families in Ukraine and tried to preserve their Jewish life even in the U.S. Katy’s father, Fishel Rubin, was a rabbi and sent his daughter far away from the Jewish pogroms of … Continue reading Reclaiming My Legacy and My Hebrew Name: Morasha Kehilla

Morasha Kehilla: Why I started using my Hebrew name (full version)

I was born into my Jewish family in the Tampa Bay area of Florida, around the time modern Americans were celebrating 200 years since Christian pioneers formally took control of the land they conquered from previous inhabitants. Though my religious great-grandparents fled our enemies in Europe and emigrated to the U.S. in the early 1900s, … Continue reading Morasha Kehilla: Why I started using my Hebrew name (full version)

Birthday Blessings

I awoke at 5:30 am today to the sound of Bedouin men in the neighboring village chanting their prayers (Usually I wake up at 6:30 to the songs of busy yellow-beaked Eurasian blackbirds outside my window and on the roof.).  Their chanting was so hauntingly mesmerizing that it gently carried me from asleep to awake… … Continue reading Birthday Blessings

Full Moon Feelings in Eretz Yisrael

Why can't I just feel "good"? I keep resisting whatever this is inside. The uneasiness is hard to explain. Like I'm uncomfortable within my body, here in this place. What is this place? It's not where I'm meant to be. Not really, anyway. My soul knows; it's not natural. But I -- like other souls … Continue reading Full Moon Feelings in Eretz Yisrael

My First Time: A Magical Visit to the Kotel

By Mindy Rubenstein This morning I pressed my forehead against the cool limestone of the Kotel, the Western Wall in Jerusalem.  How can it be that I was actually there? For years I longingly watched the Kotel live online.  It was like a dream — a place only others were fortunate enough to visit. And … Continue reading My First Time: A Magical Visit to the Kotel

Aliyah Journey – Part 3

We sit here in gray plastic chairs at the airport waiting for Israel to process us and make us official. We made it through the 12-hour flight, skipping over Tuesday night and going right into Wednesday morning. I told the kids it’s like daylight savings time, but instead of losing one hour, we lost seven. … Continue reading Aliyah Journey – Part 3

Aliyah Journal – Part 2

August 24-29 | 27 Av-2 Elul, 5782 We received our official approval from the Jewish Agency, tentatively confirmed our Nefesh B'Nefesh sponsored flight, and then, finally, our precious Visas arrived. I'm typing this with a feeling of disbelief and awe, because there were so many months, details and decisions, paperwork and interviews, and then this … Continue reading Aliyah Journal – Part 2

Aliyah Journal – Part 1

August 9-14, 2022 | 13-17 Av 5782  I was never a Zionist. In fact, through much of my life I didn’t even realize I had any connection to the Land of Israel. I naively thought it was simply a country, like any other, that happened to have Jewish people living there. Mindy Rubenstein I first … Continue reading Aliyah Journal – Part 1

Go…to the land that I will show you

Ten months ago we sent our 15-year-old son 6,500 miles away to the Holy Land. He’s part of a unique, 3-year program with students from literally around the world, including Kenya, Ethiopia, Germany, Holland, Japan, and Panama. But a few months into the program, he was physically sick and struggling emotionally. Because of the closed … Continue reading Go…to the land that I will show you