Posts by Mark Sunshine

Why Does a Synagogue President Become the Easter Bunny?

Easter Bunny

This article was originally published in the Florida Jewish Journal, April 2019. You can read the full article here. I am Jewish and the president of Temple Beth El of Boca Raton, and for the last few years I have celebrated Easter. That’s right, I go to an Easter dinner with hundreds of families and…

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Chanukah Reconsidered

Chanukah Reconsidered

Chanukah? Every year we celebrate Chanukah without a lot of consideration of its larger message. Chanukah’s a fun holiday; but is there more to Chanukah than the relative fluff of giving gifts, playing with the dreidel and eating latkes? As it turns out, Chanukah speaks to our modern day American Jewish experience. Chanukah is all…

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The Mourner’s Kaddish Is For The Living

Mourner's Kaddish

Mourner’s Kaddish: Central to Jewish Prayer The Mourner’s Kaddish is the most recognized and central prayer of the Jewish mourning ritual, even though it does not, even once, mention death. Starting with the prayer’s first verse, the Mourner’s Kaddish is a reaffirmation of faith, life and a prayer for peace. Instead of lamenting the past,…

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Travel Insurance Makes Good Cents!

Travel Insurance Makes Go Sense

BE KIND. BE RESPONSIBLE. Purchasing your pre-need funeral arrangements is one of the kindest and most financially responsible things you can do for your family. Not only do you lock in the cost of your funeral at today’s prices (rather than future inflated and higher prices), you help your loved ones’ cope with your passing…

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The California Wildfires

NNapa and Sonoma counties wild fires demonstrate a "love your neighbour" attitude.

JUDAISM BROUGHT TO LIFE. Last week I traveled to California and visited Napa and Sonoma counties. The trip touched me in many ways. Approximately 6 months ago, Napa and Sonoma counties were ablaze from an out of control wildfire that incinerated an area larger than New York City. The Devastation of a Fire Lingers Beyond…

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Dog Sent To Wrong Airport by Airline – What If That Was Mom?

The details behind how the remains of a loved one are shipped is critical

AIRLINES TRY HARD … … But they make shipping mistakes all the time. The latest shipping “kerfuffle” occurred when United Airlines shipped a dog to Japan instead of Kansas.  The family was apoplectic and the airline was profoundly embarrassed. The details are in the links below: Dog Bound For Kansas Mistakenly Shipped To Japan Via…

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“They’re Gonna Lose Mom!!”

Air transport luggage

TRANSPORTATION OF THE DECEASED: That was my wife’s fear when her mother passed away in Florida. We needed to transport her up north for burial and we worried that she would get “lost”.   My wife was sure that if the airline could lose her luggage, then they could do the same with her mother.…

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Whitewashed History: The Tragedy of 9 Adar

Sando Botticelli Painting

THE HOUSE OF HILLEL & THE HOUSE OF SHAMMAI Every Jew has heard the ancient stories of the Houses of Hillel and Shammai and their opposing views in the early codification of Jewish law. We learned that Rabbi Hillel and Rabbi Shammai disagreed on virtually everything.  They even disagreed about whether it was wrong to…

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