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      Tamar Yonah is one of Israel's most popular English-speaking radio show hosts. She made Aliyah from Southern California and after serving in the Israeli army began a prolific career in radio, including production, news and program development. She was the original creator and producer of 'The Aliyah Show' and still works whenever she can in that field. Tamar is a political activist, wife and mother residing in Judea and Samaria and currently hosts the top-rated shows of The Weekend Edition & The Tamar Yonah Show. Her award winning blog covers current events, religion, politics and anything else that's on her mind.

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      Tishrei 25, 5770, 10/13/2009

      American Idol Star Lights Shabbos Candles

      by Tamar Yonah

      I knew that Paula Abdul was Jewish, but that she lights Shabbos Candles?

      So, not one just to complain and talk about negative things happening, I thought that I would write something more positive now.  So I was sent a link to watch a youtube video, and on the right hand side bar I saw this video below talking about Paula Abdul and her being a good Jewish girl, so curiously, I clicked.  Watch at 18 seconds in where she admits that she lights Shabbat Candles.

       

      So, some nice news above, - and no, let's not have any sarcastic - she's not dressed modestly or she does this or doesn't do that.  We are all on our own spiritual journey, so please, no 'holier than thou' talk backs. 

      And to follow up on this nice little news item, there IS a re-kindling of Judaism in Jews who have strayed away to the secular world.  My 18 year old son who is in a pre-army program at the moment, went with his Yeshiva - at the request of a secular kibbutz, to hold Yom Kippur services in their club house (they were so anti-religious, they didn't even have a synagogue on the kibbutz).  -Well, after that Yom Kippur, the kibbutznik who arranged to have the Yeshiva boys come to lead the services for them, said that their club house has NEVER been so full.  There was not enough room, not enough chairs, not enough prayer books for all the kibbutznikim who came for the Yom Kippur services.  In addition, see this article on how kibbutzim (and now also neighborhoods in Tel Aviv [known as the 'secular city']) are requesting synagogues and mikvahot (spiritual 'modest' bath houses) to be built for them.

      "The Israeli secular community does not really know what to make of the new trend, but Baruch Hashem, many kibbutzim and other secular communities around Israel are requesting a shul and mikve, the very same communities that have lived for decades without the holy structures.

      Many of the secular kibbutzim have been ideologically opposed to the construction of the buildings, working with tenacity to remove any trace of Yiddishkeit from their communities.

      This year, dozens of shuls and mikvas have been constructed in secular communities and it appears the trend is gaining momentum. 50% of requests given to the Ministry of Religious Services have come from secular kibbutzim and moshavim."
       To read more, click HERE.

      In addition, more and more people today are looking for spirituality in a bankrupt world that offers no ideology except for self gratification and easy money.  But things are looking up. When American Idol star Paula Abdul lights Shabbat candles, prays, and goes to a Chabad shul, and even Madonna with her lewd past, is looking for spirituality, albeit in a misguided way, maybe, just maybe, we are closer to redemption than we thought.