The Orthodox Union’s third annual Torah New York event held this Sunday drew some 2,500 participants for a day of shiurim and discussions on topics ranging from teshuvah and Rosh Hashanah to complex halachic and hashkafic implications of modern technology.
Held at Citi Field Stadium in Flushing, Queens, the event featured 29 speakers who addressed 31 topics. It also featured a siyum by the OU’s Smichas Chaver Program, an initiative designed to give working people a greater depth of understanding of major topics in practical halachah.
Sivan Rahav Meir, a well-known Israeli political reporter who has written extensively on the broader effects of social media, delivered a talk on the dangers of wealth and modern technology.
“It is no longer good enough to have Amazon, now you need Amazon Prime. We can’t even wait a week for a package to arrive, it has to be that day or at least the next. What does that say about our culture? This is the crisis of our generation. How do we learn to use social media for the good, but turn it off and away from things that distract us and our children?” she said.
Other lecturers included Rabbi Moshe Elefant, Rabbi Eytan Feiner, Rabbi Ahron Lopiansky, Rabbi Yaakov Neuburger, Rabbi Yonason Sacks, Rabbi Herschel Schachter, Rabbi Zecharia Wallerstein, Rabbi Steven Weil, and Rabbi Mordechai Willig.
Orthodox Union Executive Vice President Allen Fagin expressed his satisfaction at the success of the event.
“The comprehensiveness of Torah New York, the range of classes and the breath of scholarship that reaches young children, teenagers and adults makes this such an important event for the Jewish community,” he said. “It is so heartwarming to see us transform Citi Field into a real field of dreams, and how Torah learning can raise and inspire our community.”