Learn more about this exciting new platform, where Reform congregational leaders connect with colleagues and peers who have similar concerns, interests and responsibilities.
In the spring of 2017, I joined nearly 800 Reform Jews gathered in Washington, D.C., for the Religious Action Center's flagship social justice conference, the Consultation on Conscience. Held in alternating years, this Consultation featured leaders and activists, as well as workshops geared toward congregational social justice leaders. It also marked a significant – and important – shift in our Movement's social justice work with the launch of the North American Brit Olam.
Tikkun olam, world repair, has served as a pillar of our Movement from the beginning. The Brit Olam – a Covenant with our World – is an expression of our Movement’s longstanding commitment to this work.
Rather than mandating the ways in which our congregations should take action, the Brit Olam serves as a guidepost and a framework, helping congregations move social justice closer to the center of their communities. It strengthens congregational social justice endeavors, engages more members in this important work, and connects each community more deeply to our Movement’s social justice priorities, which are focused on protecting our society’s most vulnerable.
How can the Brit Olam help you to strengthen your congregation’s pursuit of tikkun olam?
Working individually, each congregation can make positive change in our world. Working together, powerfully and as a Movement, we can achieve our collective vision of the world we want—one filled with wholeness, justice, and compassion. By signing onto the Brit Olam, you are adding your congregation’s strength and voice to this network. To see how this network is already exercising its might, look at the Immigrant Justice Campaign's Dream Act Initiative, which aims to help pass a clean Dream Act of 2017 and to stand with Dreamers vulnerable to deportation. Brit Olam congregations have been vital to making this a truly nationwide effort.
During last spring’s Consultation, we set a goal of 100 Brit Olam congregations by the time of the Union for Reform Judaism's 2017 Biennial in Boston, December 6-10, 2017. We are close to achieving this initial goal, but we know this network will not be complete when we reach 100 Brit Olam congregations. With 900 congregations across North America, our potential to create long-lasting change in the world will only increase as we bring the Brit Olam to more congregations and communities.
If your congregation has not yet signed onto the Brit Olam, I hope you will consider doing so today. Use these resources from the RAC to begin a conversation among your congregation’s leaders.
Help us reach – and surpass – our goal of 100 Brit Olam congregations in the coming weeks. We look forward to celebrating our Brit Olam congregations at the upcoming Biennial, and to strengthening and enriching the network in the coming months.