Monday, October 20, 2014 Tishri 26, 5775

Bryan Schwartzman

Freelancer, Former Staff Writer
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Sitting outside at a crowded West Philadelphia cafe and taking sips from an iced coffee as trolley cars intermittently clattered by along Baltimore Avenue, student Rabbi Lauren Grabelle Herrmann could barely contain her enthusiasm for her adopted neighborhood - and its newest synagogue. "It feels like a city, and you don't have to get in your car to go everywhere...
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The American and Israeli flags make for a ubiquitous pairing inside Reform Congregation Keneseth Israel, adorning the Elkins Park synagogue's sanctuary bimah, chapel, library and classrooms like a couple that had seemingly been together forever. But just two years ago, Israeli flags were in short supply within the building - an omission that seemed less representative of 2003 than of...
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Growing up in Richboro and becoming a Bat Mitzvah at Shir Ami-Bucks County Jewish Congregation, Lisa Pliskin-Ismail never imagined she would one day marry a Sudanese man, in Egypt, with a ceremony conducted by a Muslim cleric and a wedding contract written in Arabic. But six years ago, while living on a Kibbutz outside Haifa, she took a trip to...
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David Pine seemed barely able to stay awake, at times resting his eyes or laying his head on his parents' kitchen table while his mother kept urging him to wake up. But his utter exhaustion can be forgiven; it's been a whirlwind summer for the 12-year-old from Newtown. After all, his Council Rock-Newtown baseball squad just returned on Aug. 25...
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And does it get easier or harder with each passing year?
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Sunday, Sept. 11, marks the fourth anniversary of the deadliest attack on American soil, a day that claimed nearly 3,000 lives, changed a cityscape forever, and set in motion a series of events - including the U.S.-led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq - that still grip the nation. It also happens to be the first Sunday after Labor Day, and...
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Profile

Bryan Schwartzman has been reporting on the Jewish community of Philadelphia since 2003. After 10 years as a staff writer, he now occasionally freelances for the Exponent. He writes about trends in politics, religion and spirituality, philanthropy and sometimes dabbles in sports and the arts. 
 
He has received numerous awards from the Pennsylvania Society of Professional Journalists, the Jewish American Press Association and other organizations.
 
A native New Yorker, he earned a master’s degree in modern Jewish history and literature from the Jewish Theological Seminary. He is also a graduate of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

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