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September 10, 2004     Heritage Florida Jewish News
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September 10, 2004
 

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PAGE 4 HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS David :in Back, rested and raring to go I'm back, ready once again to spread the synagogue's great mission to Israel in the good word throughout Central Florida. My process. Our kids went away to camp for the summer's been full of adventures, mishaps, first time. We survived Charley, losing four successes and failures. In other words, it's trees and power for a few days, but learning been full of life, as I'm sure yours has. We how to count our blessings and be there for traveled as a family to France and Italy (more others at the same time. I've loved watching about that in another article) and missed our the Olympics, and yes the men's basketball By Carl Alpert Some thoughts on tourism HAIFA--In a country that has no oil, no coal, no minerals, it has been said that Israel's only natural resource is tourism. In normal times (have there indeed been such?) tour- ism has been a major income-producing fac- tor in the country's economy. However, Arab services and Jewish organization activity. Visits to Israel came last. Is this a reflection of the true picture? The United States is the principal source of tourists to Israel, followed by France, England and Germany. In the world, France leads in team needs an overhaul and no Paul Hamm shouldn't give back his gold medal (though there could be a second one given out) and I think Michael Phelps giving his spot on the US 4 X 100 medley relay to lan Crocker was an act of pure altruism, not a manipulated publicity stunt and way to go women's soccer, basketball, and softball. Women rule! I can't say I'm rested after this abbreviated, hot summer of turmoil, travel, and transition, but it's time. Time to put thoughts on paper, time to stir some juices (and hopefully some insights, inspiration and controversy along the way), time to explore our past, dissect our future, evaluate trends and implement agendas. That's a heady program for the coming year, and I hope to do things a little differentl~. My intent is to investigate issues of concern on a deeper level, with connected series that relate to single topics. So look for month-long cycles on subject matters as diverse as the upcoming Presidential elections, the philosophy of char- ity, creating a Jewish home when the modern world conspires against you, the who and how of supporting Israel, and the pros and cons of community building and expansion. Of course there will be times when the flow is interrupted, when columns spring up on the basis of current events or issues of relevance to our community that must be dealt with quickly. And there may be times when I write a single column in between series that exists on its own. Enough of that. The month of September shall focus on charity. As we move into a New Year and a new phase of introspection and personal evalu- ation, there's a timeliness to asking ourselves what our motivations are to be good, to give philanthropically, to sacrifice for the welfare I'll start the discussion with thought. It's not how much we we're capable ofgivinl we, as individuals, can give awaY~ time and money (there are otherS,: for another column).'l have their time to give, stretched by financial commit incomes, or the burden of people give their time in they are giving to their capacity are those who have no time of money. They may work pulled of business, family, friends, money generously. These peoplq their capacity. The q ourselves this New Y~ to give, and if we then we ought to give both, and without the other, using time (or money) as an time (or our money), t ing our capacity to give not as as surely as if we just said no. point where we are not sacrificing or our loved ones but are giving we can, we are fulfilling our ril as Jews and conscious human there, to help our brothers and lives of meaning and purpose whi e those in need to do the same. It's good to be back. Shalom. That's the good word until next opinions in this colum and not the Heritage or any other, agency or organization. Send comments, and critiques to the