fbpx
Monday, September 28, 2020

Don’t call him super-rav

“Is Rabbi T a crime-fighting rabbi?” That’s what a student asked Pressman Academy Rav Beit Sefer (head school rabbi) Chaim Tureff at a recent question-and-answer session.

“Lehavdil,” Tureff responded, using the Hebrew word to draw a distinction between himself and the person his students think he might be. “They want to know if I’m Superman.”

Clark Kent never admits to being Superman, and Tureff, who is at least 6-foot-4, teaches Torah-infused tae kwon do and hapkido classes at a studio on Wilshire Boulevard and competed in two different sports at the collegiate level, is similarly reluctant to talk about the charity he does in and beyond the Jewish community.

Tureff has been a volunteer with the Pico-Robertson Hatzolah Emergency Rescue Team since it was established in 2004. (He was once disgusted by the sight of blood but overcame that.) He also works with Jewish teens who need a bit more support than they may otherwise be getting. Humble and discreet, Tureff wouldn’t say much more than that.

When he will cop to some charitable or kind act, Tureff is quick to give credit to others. He organizes annual lunches on Thanksgiving and Purim at B’nai David-Judea for 40 or so homeless people from Pico-Robertson, but insisted that the synagogue’s rabbi, Yosef Kanefsky, laid the groundwork to make it possible. “He’s the gadol [great man] when it comes to these things,” Tureff said. Tureff has also helped to plant trees in his neighborhood (he gives credit to L.A. Green Mile founder Noah Bleich) and has worked as a counselor to recovering addicts at the Chabad residential treatment center (but mentioned how great the work being done at Beit T’Shuvah is).

Story continues after the video.

For the most recent “Got Mitzvah?” project, a program Tureff launched at Pressman in 2006 as a way to get students directly involved with good causes, the students sent care packages and wrote letters to American servicemen and servicewomen in Iraq. “Other teachers gave me the idea,” Tureff said.

Getting Tureff to accept the title of Mensch took serious urging from relatives. “‘You inspire me,’” Tureff said, recalling his mother’s words. “ ‘You do little things every day. People need to know they can do things like that.’ ”

“Which made me feel a little better,” Tureff said, sitting in his office at Pressman, a windowless former bridal chamber only slightly bigger than a telephone booth. “As it is, it’s still a bit awkward.”

For more info, visit hatzolahofla.org.

Did you enjoy this article?

You'll love our roundtable.


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Jewish Journal, 3250 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA, 90010, http://www.jewishjournal.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

Enjoyed this article?

You'll love our roundtable.


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Jewish Journal, 3250 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA, 90010, http://www.jewishjournal.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

Latest Articles

Politics at Kol Nidre: Yes or No?

Once a rabbi starts to promote specific policies to address societal ills, the message becomes a source of communal division. Two people can share a concern for a problem without agreeing on the solution. Once a rabbi picks a side on solutions, we’re back to divisive partisanship.

Avoiding Politics Is a Political Act, No Matter What Rabbi Jonathan Sacks Says

Political neutrality is a form of political expression supporting those in power or those destined to remain in power without the voice of opposition.

Break the Fast with Jonah and the Whale Placemats

After reading the story of Jonah on Yom Kippur, what better way to break the fast than with a meal featuring these Jonah and the Whale placemats? 

Israel File Appendix: Numbers Under Lockdown

The weighted average below takes into account the timing of the poll (more recent, more important); the number of people surveyed (more people, more...

It’s Time to Look at Palestinian-Israeli Conflict With Fresh Eyes

How the Abraham Accords were achieved and what the “Palestinian cause” now requires.

Can We Forgive Each Other in the Midst of a Tribal Culture War?

At a time when Jews are supposed to look within and admit fault, too many of us are virtue signaling and delegitimizing our opponents. Can we stop?

150-Year-Old Time Capsule Found in a Wall of Oldest Synagogue in British City

Construction workers at the site of a former Spanish and Portuguese synagogue in Manchester, England, found a time capsule from the 1870s.

What Does it Mean to Have a Deeper Yom Kippur?

Rosh Hashanah begins the work. Yom Kippur seals it. But only if you are willing to go deep.

Lisa Edelstein Joins the Cast of ‘ 9-1-1 Lone Star’

Lisa Edelstein (“House,” “The Good Doctor”) has joined the cast of FOX’s “9-1-1 Lone Star” as the ex-wife of the fire captain played by...

AOC Withdraws From Yitzhak Rabin Memorial Event Following Pro-Palestinian Criticism

The event will be held in October by Americans for Peace Now.

Culture

Break the Fast with Jonah and the Whale Placemats

After reading the story of Jonah on Yom Kippur, what better way to break the fast than with a meal featuring these Jonah and the Whale placemats? 

Lisa Edelstein Joins the Cast of ‘ 9-1-1 Lone Star’

Lisa Edelstein (“House,” “The Good Doctor”) has joined the cast of FOX’s “9-1-1 Lone Star” as the ex-wife of the fire captain played by...

Prosecutors Drop Solicitation Charges Against Patriots Owner Robert Kraft

They said they didn't have a case when they couldn't use a video for their case.

‘RBG’ Filmmaker Julie Cohen on Justice Ginsburg’s Death: ‘I Was Stunned’

Cohen made her comments during a Zoom event with Los Angeles Jewish Film Festival Executive Director Hilary Helstein on Sept. 24. 

Dr. Mandy Cohen on Guiding North Carolina’s Pandemic Response Wearing a Chai Necklace

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, Dr. Mandy Cohen has provided steady guidance to the people of North Carolina. As the secretary of the North Carolina...

Latest Articles
Latest

Politics at Kol Nidre: Yes or No?

Once a rabbi starts to promote specific policies to address societal ills, the message becomes a source of communal division. Two people can share a concern for a problem without agreeing on the solution. Once a rabbi picks a side on solutions, we’re back to divisive partisanship.

Avoiding Politics Is a Political Act, No Matter What Rabbi Jonathan Sacks Says

Political neutrality is a form of political expression supporting those in power or those destined to remain in power without the voice of opposition.

Break the Fast with Jonah and the Whale Placemats

After reading the story of Jonah on Yom Kippur, what better way to break the fast than with a meal featuring these Jonah and the Whale placemats? 

Israel File Appendix: Numbers Under Lockdown

The weighted average below takes into account the timing of the poll (more recent, more important); the number of people surveyed (more people, more...

It’s Time to Look at Palestinian-Israeli Conflict With Fresh Eyes

How the Abraham Accords were achieved and what the “Palestinian cause” now requires.

Hollywood

‘Dirty Dancing’ Sequel Starring Jennifer Grey Announced

It’s official: A “Dirty Dancing” sequel is coming, and it’s starring Jewish actress Jennifer Grey, who played Frances “Baby” Houseman in the 1987 original.

Roy Moore’s Lawsuit Against Sacha Baron Cohen Over Being Pranked Can Proceed, Judge Rules

By the time the episode aired, it was widely known that Cohen was punking public figures.

Podcasts

Pandemic Times Episode 90: Yom Kippur in a Pandemic Can Be Our Most Meaningful

New David Suissa Podcast Every Tuesday and Friday. Reflections from Rabbi Mordecai Finley on going deep on Judaism's holiest day. How do we manage our lives...

Pandemic Times Episode 89: Honoring Ruth Bader Ginsburg

New David Suissa Podcast Every Tuesday and Friday. Reflections on the life and legacy of a Jewish and American hero. How do we manage our lives...

More news and opinions than at a Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Jewish Journal, 3250 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA, 90010, http://www.jewishjournal.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

x