Conference on the Future of the Jewish People
The Conference on the Future of the Jewish People will take place next week, October 20-22, in Jerusalem. The conference is organized by the Jewish People Policy Institute (JPPI) with the presence and participation of President Shimon Peres as Honorary Chair. The JPPI leadership, headed by Ambassador Stuart Eizenstat and Mr. Leonid Nevzlin, will present the policy recommendations to President Peres and Prime Minister Netanyahu, along with the leaders of Jewish organizations and communities around the world.
For the first time, 120 conference participants will raise issues regarding the status of the Jewish Diaspora in peace agreements between Israel and the Arab world in issues such as the final status of Jerusalem, the Jewish character of Israel and the future access to holy sites. The conference will also hold an in-depth discussion on Delegitimization, not only in the international arena, but also internally as it strains the friendship and support of allies, by offering ways in which the Jewish People can unite to deal with this increasing phenomenon. The issue regarding conversion (‘Giyur’) and the disagreements between Israel’s religious authorities and the Diaspora will also be on the agenda. Conference organizers have succeeded in creating a roundtable of dialogue between the religious sectors, including influential Orthodox Rabbis, to deal with potential and reasonable solutions to the conversion crisis.
The conference participants, drawn from all over the world and from different religious sectors, will be divided into five Working Groups:
1. The Jewish Dimension of Final Status Peace Agreements with the Arab World
- The Jewish People’s stake in permanent peace agreements between Israel and the Arab world such as the Jewish character of the state, the final status of Jerusalem and access to the holy sites.
2. The Phenomenon of Deligitimization in the Overall Context of Attitudes towards Israel and the Jewish People
- The Deligitimization phenomenon, not only in the international arena, but also internally as it strains the friendship and support of allies and also the incentive of some among the younger generation to identify with Israel and the Jewish civilization.
3. European Jewry in 2030
- The social, cultural and demographic developments in Europe and their impact on European Jews and their organizational systems.
4. Peoplehood – Thin and Strong: Rethinking Israel-Diaspora Relations for a New Century
- Israel-Diaspora relations, their ramifications on identity and identification, and looking toward a new paradigmatic approach engaging more Israelis and Israeli assets.
5. Conversion: Between Crisis and Dialog
- Conversion disagreements between Judaism’s main streams and between religious authorities in Israel and the Diaspora: the process, possible new approaches, and accommodating intermarried families in Jewish life.
Each of these Working Groups will gather for five sessions over three days. At the end of the discussions, each group’s Chair will present its policy recommendation to the conference assembly.