Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Calling All Young Jews

I don’t normally like to talk about my family. But as long as my son in law, Rabbi Micah Greenland (pictured standing in the photo) is in the news I will take advantage of it. He is the Regional Director the Midwest Mesorah Region of NCSY.

As most people who read this blog know, I am a big fan of this organization. My first experience was when the last regional director, Rabbi A.Y. Weinberg  (affectionately called AY by just about everybody) invited me for their annual winter conclave.

When I saw what he was doing with those public school kids… I was hooked. I became an immediate fan. He motivated so many to look at their religious heritage - all without pressure. Nor did he do anything to alienate these kids from their parents. Quite the contrary. He demanded that every step of the way in coming closer to Judaism they continue to respect and honor their parents. This has resulted in some cases in parents becoming more observant themselves.

AY took over as director here when NCSY was barely alive. It existed - but that was about it. He transformed it and made it a powerhouse of outreach to adolescents. When he retired and went on to a new career dealing with troubled kids - my son in law Micah was hired. He has taken this organization to new heights. For details read the article.

I met my son in law at that first conclave I attended. He was at the time a senior in Fasman Yeshiva High (HTC’s high school). And he was national president of NCSY. I didn’t know it then but a few years later he would marry my daughter Rivkie while studying for Semicha at Yeshiva University.

The Chicago Jewish News did a nice job on last week’s cover story about his organization. My thanks to publisher Joey Aaron and managing editor Pauline Dubkin Yearwood.