USCJ News

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NEWS

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Tap Into These USCJ Convention Ideas and Resources

For five days in December 2017, 1,000 people from nearly 200 congregations convened in Atlanta to question the assumptions we bring to the Jewish present and inspire our movement to embrace the emerging Jewish future.

Participants left Atlanta with ideas and resources to use in their communities back home. If you were unable to attend or simply want to revisit the highlights, here are some of the videos, presentations and other content from the experience.

We look forward to seeing you December 6-10, 2019 in Boston at the Westin Boston Waterfront for USCJ Convention 2019!

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USCJ Names Jaclyn Danziger of Metuchen, New Jersey, Winner of 2017 Shoshana S. Cardin Leadership Award

USCJ has announced that Jaclyn Danziger of Neve Shalom in Metuchen, New Jersey, was awarded its 2017 Shoshana S. Cardin Leadership Award. The award was presented at USCJ’s Convention 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia, during the General Assembly of Kehillot.

Since joining Neve Shalom in 2012, Jaclyn has worked to make it a more inclusive and welcoming place for congregants of all ages and backgrounds. As the current chair of the Membership Committee, she has planned several widely appealing programs, including a monthly communal Shabbat dinner that attracts close to 200 people.

She is also a driving force for the synagogue’s Learning Enhancement Task Force, where she was instrumental in leading the search to find a new educational director and has introduced new, innovative educational models.

Read the complete press release on the award announcement here.

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Read USCJ’s Statement on The Burma Human Rights and Freedom Act

USCJ has joined 300 Jewish organizations and leaders in calling Congress to impose sanctions to help end the Burmese military’s atrocities against the Rohingya people. Read the statement here.

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EVENTS

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Immerse Yourself in Sulam for Officers

Can’t make it to Baltimore for Sulam for Presidents, June 7-10, 2018? Or maybe you’re not the synagogue president but want immersive leadership training?

You and your fellow kehilla (Jewish community) leaders can try Sulam for Officers, April 29-30, 2018, as an alternative.

Taking place over two days, Sulam for Officers is an intensive leadership program that arms officers with the resources and tools needed to contribute to the leadership team and to continue their climb up the leadership ladder.

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Save the Date For This Soulful Shabbaton!

KOL TEFILLA, a Soulful Shabbaton to Elevate Kehilla Prayer-Life
April 17-19, 2018
Temple Beth Am, Los Angeles, CA

Learn more here.

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RESOURCES

thicker-line2February Is Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month (JDAIM)

Let’s be proactive and intentionally reach out to our community members who are differently abled. It is our job to embrace and welcome them as we welcome all people. Please access information about JDAIM 2018 here and resources and articles on inclusion on the USCJ website here.

Additionally, there is a new cohort of the USCJ Ruderman Inclusion Action Community starting. This opportunity to engage with other congregations in an intensive planning process to become fully inclusive of people with disabilities and their families is open to any affiliated kehilla (Jewish community). For more information, please contact Inclusion Specialist Jennifer Gendel at gendel@uscj.org or 847-275-3702. You can find information and the application on the USCJ webpage. The program will run from January through September 2018.

thicker-line2Welcoming Interfaith Families into Conservative Synagogues

A new publication, co-authored through a partnership between USCJ and InterfaithFamily, has been released to help guide synagogues through the process of welcoming interfaith families. Access this publication here.

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Lessons Learned: 72 hours with Millennial Leaders

USCJ Transformation Specialist Nadine Kochavi has provided useful tips on how your congregation can successfully engage emerging leaders. Access those tips here. If you’d like to contact Nadine, she is reachable by e-mail at nkochavi@uscj.org.

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Searching for a Jewish Educator?

We know congregations often begin educator searches in January. Did you know that USCJ’s Learning Department helps member kehillot fill education director, school principal, early childhood director and other educational leadership positions? See how USCJ can help here.

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Leadership Matters Is Headed Your Way

Leadership Matters is USCJ’s new bi-weekly communication for leaders at member congregations. Those in leadership positions will begin to receive this publication, which will include valuable content to help strengthen your congregation and advance the role of an authentic and dynamic Judaism in the world. Please make sure we have your kehilla’s most up-to-date staff and board contact information. You can send current staff and leadership lists to pacsw@uscj.org.

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Access the Latest Leadership Resources From the USCJ Kehilla Strengthening and Transformation Department

Below you will find articles from a variety of sources about critical issues facing religious leaders today. We encourage you to read the articles and share the ones that challenge you with your kehilla and all those interested in raising the bar for leadership in the Jewish community. Articles from websites that require a subscription will be marked with an *.

  1. Five Boring Problems You Need to Fix: Leaders want to solve big, hairy problems, yet there are numerous day-to-day challenges that will never make headlines, but are critical to helping our institutions thrive. Read this article from The Alban Institute about unsexy but critical tasks to accomplish in the new year.
  2. A Framework for Great Nonprofit Leadership: No one can agree on what is the single quality of a great leader, but more research shows us that all great leaders overlap in certain key areas. Here is an article from The Bridgespan Group with critical data about the core competencies of great nonprofit leadership.
  3. How to Regain the Lost Art of Reflection: Synagogues are no strangers to the endless cycle of events and programs that gives little to no time to engage in the essential work of reflection. Read this article from the Harvard Business Review about mastering an essential but under-appreciated leadership skill.
  4. What To Do When Money Gets Tight: Few congregations avoid financial problems, and leadership requires the ability to balance fiscal responsibility and mission-driven strategy in those critical moments. Here is an article from the Faith and Leadership Institute about strategies for serving in an era of belt-tightening finances.
  5. Siri, Should I Believe in God?: A world with ever-increasing technological sophistication can cause people to doubt whether or not there is any room for the supernatural or the miraculous. Read this article from the Chicago Tribune about faith in a highly technological world.

As a reminder, these articles were chosen after reviewing the following publications. If you have any suggestions on publications you would like to see reviewed, please contact Rabbi Josh Rabin, Director of Innovation, at rabin@uscj.org. To subscribe to the Sulam Reader or Sulam Texts, click on this link.

 

 

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