You already know how to host a beautiful, profound, and Jewishly meaningful seder. What you may not yet know, though, is how to re-imagine your usual traditions to incorporate digital content that will enliven this year’s virtual rendition of your seder.
Related Blog Posts on COVID-19, Education, Engaging Families with Young Children, and Strengthening Congregations
Partner organizations of the Reform Movement are offering the best collaborative thinking and the most comprehensive resources to guide your visioning and planning.
Just like some of the employees that are spotlighted in Undercover Boss, congregational educators do work that is critical, yet often underappreciated and undervalued for their impact on the community and their role in vibrant congregations.
New webmasters Lisa Goldstein, RJE, Co-President Karen Freedman, and Treasurer Michelle Foels share what their motivations for choosing RJ Web Builder 3.0 were, what their experiences were like, and what features they most enjoy.
The URJ Pulse Survey and the newly expanded URJ Pulse+ Survey showed that participating congregations were experiencing similar trends. Having the ability to compare your data with that of other URJ congregations will paint a picture that will help you assess where you are and share a more detailed story with your congregants and donors.
During the COVID pandemic in southern California, we saw our Jewish communities weaken. From our camp spaces disappearing to our teen youth groups (TYG) struggling, many of us stopped programming and decreased in membership, while a few of us thrived the best way we knew how - by joining forces. For us, as youth directors, advisors, and educators, we knew this was the way to keep teens inspired and engaged with one another.
Email and other technologies are a huge factor in why employees feel like they're always on the clock. This "always-on" culture accelerated while synagogues began facing declining membership before the pandemic and has only intensified since. Even if clergy or staff are cut, the work demands don't decrease. As a result, remaining clergy or staff or volunteers are even more overwhelmed and are burning out at alarming rates.
On the Jewish calendar, the start of the month of Elul signifies the beginning of the High Holiday season. As individuals, it is during this time that we begin the process of cheshbon hanefesh (accounting of the soul), reflecting on the past year. So too, it is important for your leadership and community to reflect on the past year and consider how to do better moving forward.
It is hard to believe that we are entering the third High Holiday season with the words "new normal" ringing in the back of our minds. This year, our leaders - clergy, professionals, and volunteers alike - are leaning into the possibilities and making plans for the new Jewish year of 5783.
Summer is a time for expansive thinking and creativity. What do we imagine for our learning programs? How can we support teachers in their own learning journeys? What opportunities can we offer families and congregants?