Archive for the ‘Israel: Jews In A State’ Category

Lutheran Nuns End Jerusalem Mission to Shoah Survivors

April 17, 2014

This article was originally published in The Times of Israel.

Sister Gratia (left) and Sister Yahalom in front of Beit Avraham at 10 Ein Gedi Street in Jerusalem. (photo credit: Renee Ghert-Zand)

Sister Gratia (left) and Sister Yahalom in front of Beit Avraham at 10 Ein Gedi Street in Jerusalem. (photo credit: Renee Ghert-Zand)

Residents of the Jerusalem’s Talpiot neighborhood who have watched nuns in their white habits go in and out of a house at 10 Ein Gedi Street for the past half century will soon notice their absence. Beit Avraham (House of Abraham), as the sisters of the Evangelical Sisterhood of Mary call their home, is closing down.

Since 1961 it has served as a guesthouse for Holocaust survivors. But with so few survivors still alive — and those still living too frail to come visit — the nuns have decided their work has come to an end.

“We received our mission from the Almighty. The Almighty gives and the Almighty takes away. Our job has ended,” says Sister Gratia in a conversation with The Times of Israel in Beit Avraham’s reception room. Sister Gratia, 71, arrived in 1975 from Austria to help run the guesthouse.

Click here to read more.

© 2014 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.

 

Herzl Magic

April 3, 2014

This article was first published in The Jerusalem Report magazine.

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Herzl memorabilia collector David Matlow (photo by Leah Boyd)

When Toronto attorney David Matlow was 12 years old, he and his good friend, Barry Simon, wrote a play for their seventh grade class in Jewish day school. They called it “The Hall of Zionists”, modeling it after “The Hall of Presidents” attraction at Disney World. Matlow remembers being Ze’ev Jabotinsky and his friend playing Theodor Herzl.

For most people, such a school assignment would be something forgotten years later, or if it were recalled at all, it would just be a fond childhood memory to look back on. But for Matlow, it is the moment he points to as the beginning of his lifelong fascination with anything and everything to do with Theodor Herzl, the father of modern political Zionism and the visionary of the State of Israel.

Overthe last 41 years, Matlow has gone from being a middle-school student playacting a Zionist leader to becoming the world’s leading private collector of Herzl memorabilia. He owns between 2,500 and 3,000 Herzl-related items. He is not sure of the exact number, but people in the business tell him that of the handful of private Herzl collections in the world, his is the largest.

The rest of this article can be read in the April 21, 2014 issue of The Jerusalem Report. It is online, but behind a pay wall.

© 2014 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.

 

Where Are the Israeli Female Small Business Owners?

April 2, 2014

This piece first appeared on The Sisterhood blog at the Forward.

Renee Ghert-Zand // Israeli women network at the business conference

Renee Ghert-Zand // Israeli women network at the business conference

Israeli women, like their counterparts in the United States are, in parlance popularized by Sheryl Sandberg, leaning in. However, although Israel is “start-up nation,” it is no leader when it comes to women and business. I got a chance to learn more about this at a conference I attended last week in Jerusalem.

Onlife, an Israeli news and content website for women, partnered with the Jerusalem Municipality to bring an annual conference on small businesses owned by women to the Jerusalem. It was held at The First Station, Jerusalem’s old train station, which has been renovated in to a culture and entertainment venue, and was attended by 1,000 women from around the country.

Click here to read more.

© 2014 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.


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