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June 16th, 2014 - Sivan 18th, 5774

From Dreams to Reality
by Guido Vitale*

In the past few days in Rome, within the walls of the Vatican, we witnessed an important moment of prayer for peace in the Middle East. Now, with the kidnapping of three Israeli boys, we have a good opportunity to move from words to actions. Those who desire peace, in Rome and around the world, should now come forward and offer their assistance so that our young men can return home safe and sound.

*Guido Vitale is the editor-in-chief of Pagine Ebraiche.
Italian Word of the Week:
by Daniela Gross

The word “zucchetto” is the diminutive of “gourd, pumpkin”, in Italian “zucca”, term that figuratively and playfully can indicate the head. The “zucchetto” is the small round skullcap worn by Roman Catholic ecclesiastic: even if you’ve never heard about it, probably you noticed it during the recent visit of Pope Francis in Israel. It is so similar to the Jewish kippah that sometimes they look almost identical, but their significance and their usage are completely different.

The Catholic “zucchetto” (used also by higher Anglican clergy) was adopted in the Early Middle Ages and had a mere practical origin. Its purpose was to cover the tonsure of the clerics, who had short haircuts and shaved the crown of the head, and to protect them from the terrible cold in the unheated churches and monasteries. With the time that cap acquired the role of identifying ecclesiastical rank by the color of the zucchetto. Only the pope is entitled to wear the white, while the red indicate cardinals and the amaranth patriarchs, archbishops and bishops. The lower clergy can use only the black cap, though it has fallen out of use. So, unlike in the Jewish world the “zucchetto” is not a religious custom and doesn’t indicate a specific attitude toward the Divinity.

But to complicate matters, in Italy “zucchetto” and kippah are almost identical. Some experts say that the skullcap of the clergy has always a small stem on the top (just like the small gourd…) and it’s always lined. But so are many Italian kippot, especially those used during the High Holidays. And to make things even more confusing, Italian Jews often refer to the kippah as “zucchetto”: it’s more polite to avoid a Hebrew word with people that couldn’t understand it, don’t you agree?

"Bring Back Our Boys"
By Rossella Tercatin

“Help us to free the three boys kidnapped in Israel”.
Shocked and saddened by the abduction of Eyal, Naftali and Gilad in the West Bank, a group of Italian Jews, among them Noemi Di Segni and Silvia Mosseri, members of the council of the Union of Italian Jewish Communities, gathered in San Peter Square on Sunday morning during the weekly address of the Pope before the Mass.
#BringBackOurBoys read the banner at the rally, inspired by the social campaign launched in the past months to free 200 schoolgirls kidnapped in Nigeria by the terrorist group Boko Haram.

“The last news from Israel and the abduction of three young students by Islamic extremists, cause us anxiety and pain" declared the president of the Union of Italian Jewish Communities Renzo Gattegna.

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Jerusalem, a Permanent Home
for Italian Culture

The Italian Jewish Community of Jerusalem gathered last week for a very special celebration.
The historic building of Rehov Hillel 25, home of the Italian Synagogue and of the Museum of the Italian Jewish Art, has been permanently acquired by the Hevrat Yehudei Italia, the association of Italian-Israelis.

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Being Rutu Modan,
the Documentary

By Ada Treves

Last October Rutu Modan received the most important award at Lucca Comics and Games - Italian largest comic festival - and as winner of the Gran Guinigi she will be protagonist of the big exhibit in 2014, next Autumn.
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Out of the Boot
Emanuele: from Turin to NY

By Simone Somekh*

It’s another busy morning in New York City and among the millions of workaholics, Emanuele makes his way to his office in the heart of the city that never sleeps. Each morning he turns on his computer, to be awaken by an aerial landscape of Turin on the desktop, along with two gadgets displaying two different time zones – East Coast and Italy.
“It feels like living in two different places at the same time” Emanuele explains. “You feel the time difference constantly”.

Emanuele Sorani, 27, landed at JFK airport in New York City in the middle of a snowstorm in December 2013, during one of the harshest winters ever recorded in living memory. Before moving to the States, Emanuele completed his Bachelor’s degree in International Relations in Turin, had academic and professional experiences in France and Belgium, studied for his Master’s in Geneva, Switzerland, and worked in the international industrial cooperation sector in Tel Aviv, Israel.

*Simone Somekh is a student at Bar-Ilan University, Israel, and writes as a freelancer for the Jewish Italian press.

Shirly Piperno, fashion styling and communication student at Istituto Marangoni, London, contributed reporting.

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Les bonnes couleurs

Francesca Matalon

Au-delà des hashtag intrigants et des commentaires acides des vrais connaisseurs ainsi que des filles qui font semblant (car ce ne peutpas être autrement) de ne rien comprendre d'un jeu dans lequel tout ce qu'on fait c'est taper dans un ballon, la coupe du monde de football est un moment de pure crise identitaire. Évidemment pour certains il n'y a aucun doute, l'Italie un peu pleurnicheuse et tatoué - mais dans les dernières années avec l'addition d'une petite touche hipster dans les smokings de Dolce et Gabbana - est la seule option.

Lire la suite

The Dialogue and Us

By Eugene Korn*

I was distressed to read the recent misinformed statements of Jacques Roumani in "Interfaith Dialogue: Challenges and Limits." He appears trapped in an outdated and inaccurate understanding of today's Catholic Church, a fact clearly indicated by his quote of Franz Rosensweig. That statement, "that Judaism is the internal foe of the Church" is nearly 100 years old and of no relevance today's reality.
I have been deeply involved in Jewish-Catholic dialogue and in direct contact with the highest officials at the Vatican for nearly 15 years. I can personally attest that no Catholic official in the dialogue - including Popes John XXIII, John Paul II, Benedict XVI and Francis - sees Judaism this way. On the contrary, faithful Jews are approached with a sense of gratitude as "elder brothers," and theologically knowledgeable Catholics frequently echo John XVIII's words that Judaism and Christianity have a "shared spiritual patrimony."

*Eugene Korn is a Rabbi and a PhD recipient

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moked è il portale dell'ebraismo italiano

This newsletter is published under difficult conditions. The editors of this newsletter are Italian journalists whose native language is Italian. They are willing to offer their energy and their skills to give international readers the opportunity of learning more about the Italian Jewish world, its values, its culture and its traditions.
In spite of all our efforts to avoid this, readers may find an occasional language mistake. We count on your understanding and on your help and advice to correct these mistakes and improve our publication.

Pagine Ebraiche International Edition is published by the Union of Italian Jewish Communities (UCEI). UCEI publications encourage an understanding of the Jewish world and the debate within it. The articles and opinions published by Pagine Ebraiche International Edition, unless expressly stated otherwise, cannot be interpreted as the official position of UCEI, but only as the self-expression of the people who sign them, offering their comments to UCEI publications. Readers who are interested in making their own contribution should email us at desk@ucei.it 
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© UCEI - All rights reserved - The articles may only be reproduced after obtaining the written permission of the editor-in-chief. Pagine Ebraiche - Reg Rome Court 199/2009 – Editor in Chief: Guido Vitale - Managing Editor: Daniela Gross.
Special thanks to: Francesco Moises Bassano, Susanna Barki, Monica Bizzio, Benedetta Guetta, Daniel Leisawitz, Gadi Luzzatto Voghera, Yaakov Mascetti, Francesca Matalon,
Giovanni Montenero, Elèna Mortara, Lisa Palmieri Billig, Shirley Piperno, Giandomenico Pozzi, Daniel Reichel, Adam Smulevich, Simone Somekh, Rossella Tercatin, Ada Treves.

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Pagine Ebraiche International Edition è una pubblicazione edita dall'Unione delle Comunità Ebraiche Italiane. L'UCEI sviluppa mezzi di comunicazione che incoraggiano la conoscenza e il confronto delle realtà ebraiche. Gli articoli e i commenti pubblicati, a meno che non sia espressamente indicato il contrario, non possono essere intesi come una presa di posizione ufficiale, ma solo come la autonoma espressione delle persone che li firmano e che si sono rese gratuitamente disponibili. Gli utenti che fossero interessati a offrire un proprio contributo possono rivolgersi all'indirizzo  desk@ucei.it

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© UCEI - Tutti i diritti riservati - I testi possono essere riprodotti solo dopo aver ottenuto l'autorizzazione scritta della Direzione. Pagine Ebraiche International Edition - notiziario dell'ebraismo italiano - Reg. Tribunale di Roma 199/2009 - direttore responsabile: Guido Vitale -
Coordinamento: Daniela Gross.
Realizzato con il contributo di:
Francesco Moises Bassano, Susanna Barki, Monica Bizzio, Benedetta Guetta, Eugene Korn, Daniel Leisawitz, Gadi Luzzatto Voghera, Yaakov Mascetti, Francesca Matalon, Giovanni Montenero, Elèna Mortara, Lisa Palmieri Billig, Shirley Piperno, Giandomenico Pozzi, Daniel Reichel, Adam Smulevich, Simone Somekh, Rossella Tercatin, Ada Treves.