Yesterday I began my prison chaplaincy, and visited a correctional facility for the very first time in order to meet the four Jewish inmates that resided there. I was unsure of how the experience would ‘look’ and how I would react to the initiation of these relationships, as well as the overall environment. I was […]

After hearing the details of her traumatic upbringing and difficult childhood, one would expect sadness, anger and resentment. But Sky is none of those things. She is confident and resolute. And remarkably grateful to the many people who have helped her along the way–especially most recently to Aleph for giving her a sense of peace […]

Only a few hours had passed, but Lisa knew something was wrong. Desperate, yet helpless to reach her husband, she suddenly remembered the Aleph Institute. Months earlier, he told her how supportive Aleph had been, making sure he had kosher food, providing him with T’fillin and visiting regularly. So she jotted the organization’s name down […]

For most kids, grandparents are a source of goodies and gifts. But for two little girls, they are even more: they are lifesavers. Born out of wedlock to a Jewish woman whose life spiraled out of control in her early teens, the two sisters experienced much turmoil in their young lives. Their father routinely abused […]

For most mothers, having a son in jail is a curse. But for Jessica, it was a blessing. That’s because her addicted son languished on the streets—homeless, hungry and helpless. In jail, he could sober up, and get food and shelter. And she would know where he was. But as she quickly learned, jail became […]

Looking at him today, one would never guess where he has been. Diagnosed with a host of mental-health problems, Michael was sent to a special school in Utah at just twelve years old. He was an angry and deviant youngster suffering from oppositional defiant disorder, childhood depression, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. But his problems […]

Nathan didn’t have time for friends growing up. He was too busy worrying about his mother. She was suffering from lupus and pulmonary hypertension, and Nathan spent his days consumed with an aching fear for her health. “I would constantly call home during school to see if she was taken to the hospital,” he said. […]

Prison is the worst place to be when you have a serious medical condition. But that’s exactly where Michelle found herself after the government convicted her of fraud. While running a jewelry business with her husband, Michelle frequently purchased precious stones on consignment and credit. However, when customers didn’t pay, she began defaulting on payments […]