By Yaffa Epstein and Leon Morris This week, Jewish foundations and philanthropists convened in San Francisco for the annual conference of the Jewish Funders Network. These thoughtful leaders play increasingly important roles in determining the priorities of American Jewish life by virtue of deciding where philanthropic dollars are invested. In our shrinking Jewish community with limited resources, decisions about grant-making are analyzed … [Read more...] about From Scalability to Depth: Back to the Sources
By Steven Windmueller, Ph.D.
In recent years, much has been written about Purim with its distinctive political themes and leadership insights. Through their actions, the story’s principal characters, Esther and Mordecai, dramatically offer us a model of active intervention. Over the past several years, this writer has offered two earlier “takes” on the Purim saga. In this piece, five additional themes are being introduced, adding to the … [Read more...] about Purim:
Contemporary Reflections on an Old Narrative
By The Jewish Education Project At this week's Jewish Funders Network Conference, The Jewish Education Project unveiled what we believe to be the largest study of American Jewish teens ever conducted, with 17,576 teens participating. GenZ Now, Understanding and Connecting with Jewish Teens Today deepens our understanding of the complexities of being a Jewish teen in the United States today. Among the key headlines from the report: … [Read more...] about Largest Study of Jewish Teens Previewed at Jewish Funders Network
By Rabbi Daniel Brenner [This is the second article in a series about revitalizing the field of family engagement for the Jewish community, written by Covenant Foundationaward recipients and grantees.] I’ll never forget the moment when, as part of a parenting workshop I was leading, I heard a mother of an 11-year-old boy say, “I don’t talk with my son anymore, we just text!” Her comment filled the room with uncomfortable laughter - and then … [Read more...] about How a New Model of Family Education Places the Parent-Child Relationship at the Center of the B’nai Mitzvah Experience
Neophilia: love of or enthusiasm for what is new or novel
By Rabbi Andy Kastner
The Jewish people have a complex relationship with that which is new. At times we shield ourselves from its influence, while at others, we embrace its potential. Our orientation to innovation shapes our approach to community development and philanthropy.
A Brief History of Modern Innovation
One of 19th century European Jewry’s leading rabbis, the Chatam … [Read more...] about Bright, Shiny and New:
The Risks of Neophilia