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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review December 23, 2013 / 20 Teves, 5774

Thief asks his victim, one of the nation's most prominent justices, for forgiveness

By Mitch Albom








http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | For 33 years, he had carried the regret, an apology never delivered, an anchor on his heart. Ray Anderson would see his victim sometimes, in the news, occasionally on television. Once or twice, they were even in the same room.

But he never confessed.

Now it was time.

A meeting had been arranged. Anderson, once a wiry point guard for Mumford High's basketball team, wore a vest and a sports jacket over his now stocky frame, an anxious look on his 53-year-old face. He walked gingerly through the austere chambers of Judge Damon Keith this past week. Anderson glanced at the walls, hundreds of photos

of the judge side by side with everyone from Nelson Mandela to John F. Kennedy. Law books. Proclamations. A commemorative gavel. It was a place of justice, which was fitting, because a small act of justice was about to take place.

Anderson was introduced to the 91-year-old Keith, now white-haired and slightly stooped, wearing a sweater. The two men sat down across a large table. Keith had no idea why Anderson was there.

Anderson cleared his throat.

"I know you don't remember me," he began, "but I grew up with your daughter, Gilda."

Keith's eyes widened.

"We went to the same elementary school. I came to your house many times for birthday parties. The house on Outer Drive?"

Keith nodded slowly.

"My father was into drugs. My stepfather was a numbers runner. My mother was a heavy partier when I was young, and I came from that culture.

"I was an athlete in high school. I was even offered a scholarship to play basketball for a small college. But I started using cocaine. I was really involved in that drug culture — selling, using, freebasing cocaine, mostly."

Keith silently kept his gaze.

"So . . . there was an incident, in 1980. . . um . . . that me and one of my friends . . .broke into your house."

Keith, who uses a hearing aide, leaned forward. "You broke into my . . . ?"

Anderson swallowed.

"We broke into your house."

A CRIME UNPUNISHED
Imagine a guilt that has burrowed inside you. Imagine a life that you have tried to leave behind, but one hook will not let you snap free.

Ray Anderson was born into a drug world. He said his mother came home when he was 3 years old to see him holding a playing card up to his nose, mimicking his father snorting heroin. He said she grabbed him and left the house that day, never to return.

But she led a party life, too, Anderson recalled. So she couldn't save him. And school couldn't save him. And basketball couldn't save him. As a 19-year-old addict, needing money to support his habit, Anderson scouted the house of his childhood friend, the judge's daughter, because, as he would confess to Keith, "we thought you would have a lot of stuff that we could sell."

One weekday morning, they broke in through the basement. No one was home. Among the items Anderson stole that day and would pawn for drugs — TV sets, jewelry — was a watch, commemorating Keith's graduation from Howard Law School.

"It had an inscription," Anderson said now, his voice unsteady. "I always felt terribly bad about that."

It was the watch, for some reason, that rattled his soul. He would see the face of it and almost hear the ticking of his conscience. Months passed. He said he was run out of Detroit by people who wanted to kill him. He said he fled to California, continued his drug dealing and usage, and hit rock bottom with a suicide attempt about five years after the break-in and robbery, a crime for which he was never charged.

"I remember that day now," Keith told Anderson. "The police called me and said someone had broken into our home. I remember feeling mostly concerned for my wife and children."

"I'm sorry," Anderson said. "I asked the Lord to please give me the opportunity to seek your forgiveness."

Keith leaned back. He smiled gently.

"You were forgiven," he said, "before you ever came in."



A SECOND CHANCE
On the night he tried to kill himself, Anderson said, he swallowed a bottle of prescription pills, drank a fifth of liquor and waited to die. But before that could happen, he said, he heard a voice call him, "Son." Then it added, "You're not ready to die."

Anderson was scared. Startled. But he said that when he heard it again, he dragged himself off the floor, out the door and walked nearly a mile to a hospital in Long Beach to have his stomach pumped.

Today, 27 years after he "gave my life to the Lord," Anderson and his wife, Toni, live simply in Waterford, Michigan and serve as full-time pastors at the House of Help, a small church and community center in northwest Detroit. He has endured the murder of his younger brother by that brother's best friend and learned to forgive the killer. He has endured a rival who went to prison after shooting at him and who emerged 30 years later seeking forgiveness. He has endured a failed marriage and learned to love and marry again.

But the timepiece he stole from Damon Keith, his friend's father whom he respected as a child, would not leave his brain, ticking until redemption could be found. For years, he read about Keith, saw him honored as one of the nation's most prominent justices, even attended a recent charity tribute that saluted the senior justice for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

It was there Anderson vowed to meet the man, and finally say what had been churning for decades.

"Judge, if you remember the inscription on that watch, I would like to get it replaced for you."

Keith smiled again and exhaled softly. "I don't remember."

Anderson seemed disappointed, as if his penance had fallen short. But Keith added this: "It doesn't matter. It's amazing that you would come to tell me this after all this time.

He stood up. "So you've done something for me, Ray. And you've made my life better. You made my day."

The two men shook hands, a federal judge and a reformed drug dealer turned pastor. They embraced lightly. And finally it was Anderson's turn to smile. You could see his body straighten as a 33-year-old shadow disappeared in the light. Winter is here and the year grows late, but it is never too late to ask forgiveness, and never too late to discover you already had it.


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