(Click here to read part 1)
Here’s the Question I Ask Myself? If we create sacred spaces outside the walls of our synagogues, will Jews Participate?
I believe that Jews want to engage in Jewish life and want to be part of a Jewish community. For many Jews the current model of the synagogue does not work and it is time to create innovative ways to connect to those Jews. And to create different models of what it means to be a rabbi in the 21st century.
Since the day I entered the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College my vision has always been to find ways to connect with Jews who do not feel welcomed in Jewish institutions, find ways to connect with those who do not want to belong to a synagogue, and to build an inclusive Jewish community, one that is welcoming to all who want to come. BTW it is not enough to just say “We are welcoming.”
I want to meet Jews where they are in their lives and create sacred spaces outside the boundaries of synagogues. I want to talk and listen to Jews about Jewish life and to help them be with the God of their understanding. I think this is important because, as many of you already know, just because we built a synagogue does not mean Jews are going to come. I’ve been to some amazing synagogues and one of the reasons I’m studying to be a rabbi today is because I am a product of this amazing synagogue, and I had an amazing rabbi who mentored me and provided the best example of how I want to be in the world.