“Independence Day”: The Independent Minyan/Prayer Group Phenomenon

In a special one-day event, the Union for Traditional Judaism (UTJ) explores the rise – and fall – of independent prayer groups.

According to a 2008 survey, thousands of Jews have attended one of the dozens of independent minyanim across North America.

What is behind the growth of this phenomenon? Are these “indies” a reaction to the contemporary synagogue framework? What effect do they have on the evolution of Tefillah, the study of Torah, and the observance of Halakhah?

Torah Anywhere (where broadband Internet connection available)

It has long been the dream of our founders to be able to use technology to spread our Torah in a serious way and make our scholarship accessible to the broadest possible population. After investing many hours of thought and experimentation, we now have a system that will allow many students at once to participate from remote locations in face-to-face real-time shiurim.

Meet the Honorees

Emunah V’Yosher Award

Rabbi Robert and Maxine Pilavin

Rabbi Robert and Maxine Pilavin have been chosen to receive our Emunah v’Yosher (Faith and Integrity) Award.  They have been supporters of the UTJ from its earliest years.  Rabbi Pilavin has served as a member of the UTJ Board and is an officer of Morashah, the rabbinic fellowship of the UTJ. Rabbi Pilavin has served as rabbi of Congregation Sons of Israel in Manalapan, NJ, since 2003.

Lomed V’Oseh Award

Emmanuel Needle, Daniel and Etty Needle

Emanuel Needle and his son and daughter-in-law, Daniel and Etty, are to receive our Lomed v’Oseh (Learning and Action) Award.  Manny, with his late wife, Norma z”l, was an early supporter of the UTJ and is a long-time member of the UTJ Board.  Daniel Needle, partner in the law firm of Kohn, Needle & Silverman, with staunch support from Etty, has recently become a central figure in UTJ’s ongoing planning and development and we are proud to be able to claim two generations of the Needle family among our leadership.

“MTV Challenge” Youth Award

Joe Klein

Joe Klein is our MTV Challenge Youth Award recipient. The MTV Challenge Award, usually reserved for professionals in the media whose work reflects Jewish values, was adapted this year to encourage youngsters who hope for a future in the media.  His recent documentary – "Surviving Surviving" – produced as an eighth-grade thesis, incorporates the traditional values prized by the UTJ.  Joe’s video thesis, about poverty-stricken Holocaust survivors, was featured in many publications as well as on CBS News. We are gratified that, at the upcoming UTJ gala, we will be able to showcase “Surviving Surviving” – Joe’s truly remarkable accomplishment.

Joining the Rabbinate

You are missing some Flash content that should appear here! Perhaps your browser cannot display it, or maybe it did not initialize correctly.

In a moving event on Wednesday night September 9, 2009, the Institute of Traditional Judaism, the Metivta granted semikhah (rabbinic ordination) to five more men. It has now ordained 15 men who serve throughout the Jewish world.

Syndicate content