CCAR Newsletter Jan-Feb 2015 - 1
חשון כסלו/טבת תשע״ה
| 4102 שבט/אדר א' תשע״הVolume 62 - Issue 2
November * December
Publication the Central Conference of American Rabbis
Publication ofof the Central Conference of American Rabbis
איגוד הרבנים המתקדמים
איגוד הרבנים המתקדמים
January * February 2015 | Volume 62 - Issue 3
INTERIM MANAGER OF MEMBER ENGAGEMENT
FROM THE PRESIDENT
Among the blessings of serving
as president of the Central
Conference of American
Rabbis is traveling to Israel for
meetings and conferences.
I cherish every opportunity
to visit the Jewish State, our
spiritual home away from
home. Even in perilous times, it is thrilling to
experience its exuberance and vitality, its beauty
and historic resonance, the riches of its culture, its
delectable food and wines. Susie and I became
Israeli citizens when I assumed the presidency
of the World Union for Progressive Judaism, the
position I held before coming to The Temple.
Even though we no longer live there, our Israeli
citizenship is very meaningful. Whenever I use
the Israeli passport that I am required to show
when I enter and leave that country, or need
to show my Israeli identity card, even when we
have to sit for more than an hour in a Jerusalem
bank to renew the Israeli credit cards for which
we have no practical need, I feel a renewed
connection with its past and present, its fate and
future. For two millennia, Jews hoped and prayed
that Jewish sovereignty would be restored in our
people's ancient homeland and that they would
be privileged to see this come about and to stand
upon its sacred soil. But it is we, no worthier than
they, who have realized that blessing.
I cannot remember how many times I have been in
Israel. Each time, it reveals something new about
itself. Susie and I journeyed there in November for
meetings of the Board of Governors of HUC-JIR.
As always, it was a treat to set foot on what Jewish
tradition calls "Eretz HaKodesh," the Land of the
Holy One. It was beautiful, sunny, and warm in
Jerusalem during our visit. The lovely weather,
however, contrasted starkly with two terrorist
murders. One victim was Almog Shimoni, 20, a
young soldier stabbed to death in Tel Aviv. The
second was Dalia Lemkus, 26, also stabbed, at
a bus stop in the Etzion bloc, south of Jerusalem.
Meanwhile, Iranian leader Khomeini once again
called for Israel's annihilation. Tension ran high
over confrontations at the Temple Mount. And yet,
despite everything, Israel remained and remains a
(Continued on page 3)
A story from Rabbi Moshe Leib of Sasov: "How to love other people is something I
learned from a peasant, sitting in an inn. For a long time the peasant sat silently, but
eventually he asked one of the others, 'Tell me, do you love me or not?' The other
peasant replied, 'I love you very much'. But the first peasant replied, 'You say that
you love me, but you do not know what I need. If you really loved me, you would
know.' The other had not a word to say to this, but I understood. To know the needs
of another and to bear the burden of their sorrow-that is the true love of others"
(adapted from Martin Buber in Tales of the Hasidim).
I have thought about this story a great deal in my role as interim manager of member engagement for
the CCAR this year. There are few outside of our community who truly know what we need, the sorrows
and stresses we carry, the challenges and struggles that are part of our diverse and varied rabbinic lives.
That is why our relationships with each other, and the relationship of the CCAR with each of you, are so
precious. While we often talk about the work of the Conference in discrete areas-placement, convention,
learning, leadership-everything that we do, everything that we are, revolves around fostering relationships,
providing support, and strengthening the spirits of rabbis. Learning how to do this-more effectively, more
meaningfully-is an ongoing process.
There are a number of steps that we have already taken to strengthen our ability to support each of our
rabbis including expanding our Rapid Response Team, adding an intern for Member Care and Wellness, and
reaching out to new ordinees in a deliberate and thoughtful manner. We are in the process of trying to make
sure that our available support systems are clearly articulated and available-on our website and in print-to
those who are just entering the rabbinate and to those further along the path of their rabbinic journey.
Meeting the needs of rabbis, fostering relationships between rabbis so that support and guidance are
available, is humbling work. It is incumbent on us, at the CCAR, to listen, to provide opportunities for you
to share from your hearts, and to experience what you need by way of support so that we can deepen our
understanding of your needs. We are working toward this goal-to strengthen our relationships with you,
and as a measure of our love.
NOMINATING COMMITTEE REPORT
The CCAR 2015 Nominating Committee, consisting of Rabbis Yael Splansky, Morley Feinstein, Kenneth
Carr, Lucy H.F. Dinner, Susan Heneson Moskowitz, Daniel Septimus, Joel Mosbacher, Lewis Barth, Donald
Rossoff, Noam Katz, Debra Kassoff, and Randy Sheinberg (chair), is pleased to announce the following
slate of Board members for the term 2015-2017 for approval at the March 2015 convention:
VP MEMBER SERVICES:
VP FINANCIAL AFFAIRS:
IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT:
All the individuals nominated have consented to serve.
TRUSTEES AT LARGE: