Not Every Change Stems From a ‘Crisis’


Published February 23, 2011, issue of March 04, 2011.
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The February 18 article “Liberal Denominations Face Crisis as Rabbis Rebel, Numbers Shrink” consolidates a series of parallel changes happening in the institutions of the Reconstructionist, Reform and Conservative movements into a narrow reading that suggests a uniform dynamic of crisis, discontent and disarray.

We cannot speak for our Reform and Conservative colleagues. We can say, however, that the characterization of the Reconstructionist movement as “weathering its own transition” as if laboring under a burden is not an accurate description.

The conversations within our movement as to what sort of organizational structure can best respond in a proactive and positive way to opportunities and challenges is not a reflex of crisis, economic implosion or rabbinic revolt. It is rather a project predicated on thinking creatively about best using the resources we have in the context of where our community is, and seeking a vision for how to advance our twin goals of expanding progressive forms of Judaism and promoting the continuity of the Jewish people.

Change is a constant; “crisis” is not.



Reconstructionist Rabbinical College

Wyncote, Pa.


Interim Executive Vice-President

Jewish Reconstructionist Federation

Jenkintown, Pa.


Executive Director

Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association

Wyncote, Pa.

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