Shabbat and God on the Rise in Israel
NY Times – A new study by the Guttman Center for surveys at the Israel Democracy Institute shows that Israel is becoming more actively Jewish. Jews, who make up about 80 percent of the country’s population, believe in God more today than they used to: in 2009, 80 percent said they did, compared with 74 percent in 1999. More of them observe Shabbat. And an “overwhelming majority” — one greater than before — believe it is important to conduct the main Jewish life-cycle rituals, such as circumcising newborns, sitting shiva to mourn the deceased and holding a bar mitzvah to celebrate a boy’s passage into manhood.