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Letters Week of Feb. 14, 2013

February 13, 2013
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Whatever Happened to Acts of Lovingkindness?

After returning from a trip to Israel, I was saddened to read of the closing of Main Line Kosher Meats (Cover story: “Abrupt End to a Beloved Institution,” Dec. 13). I was a customer for more than 20 years.

What saddened me most was the apparent tension, both here and in Israel, about being Jewish enough or being too Jewish. In both places, rabbis use adherence to ritual behavior to “be right,” making someone “a good enough” Jew. I see it playing out here in the butcher trying to obtain a new hechsher.

To me, acts of lovingkindness are the Jewish standard. And supporting a widow and her daughter who want to continue a (Jewish) family business would have been such an act.

Providing them with a written list of problems that needed to be resolved, assigning a rabbinical counselor to help and giving them a few months to correct the deficiencies — these would all have been acts of lovingkindness.

I am struck by the harshness and indifference of the rabbinical jurisdiction. It’s hard for me to see what changed in the months since the owner’s passing that would have caused them to lose their hechsher.

I patronized Main Line Kosher Meats with monthly orders as well as for special occasions. Their meat was always better, though a little more expensive, than the large chain stores. They were reliable, caring and honest.

This lack of rabbinical support reflects poorly on what it means to be Jewish enough. Heaven knows, we Jews are few in number, and all of us should try to help keep the fabric of the Jewish world together, rather than destroying it.

Marta Sivitz | Lafayette Hill

Young Signing Made Palatable by Paper’s Story

The Delmon Young signing just wasn’t sitting right all week but Michael Elkin’s story has me feeling better about it, so thanks (“Of Penance and Pennants: New Phillie Homes in on Bias Rap,” Jan. 31).

They really do need Young, so it’s nice to see that he has an interest in learning from his past.

Justin Windheim | Philadelphia

We Have the Program; Now Find the Audience

The main premise of the editorial, “Alive and Kicking,” in the Jan. 31 issue, is to remember the Holocaust.

At Temple Beth Hillel-Beth El, a committee was formed to present programs that would include liberators of concentration camps, mostly for an audience of high school and college students.

Finding liberators in itself is difficult. Those who are still standing are in their late 80s or 90s.

But finding institutions that might be interested in hearing this story has become nearly impossible. We were told by the rabbi at a major university that they were not interested in this program.

We need help. We have the speakers and the program. It is not enough for the Jewish Exponent to say in an editorial that teaching the Holocaust is a necessary rite. We should work to find the audience to hear what needs to be said.

Edward S. Snyder | Wynnewood
 

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