The Changing Nature of the Rabbinic Profession
Gary Rosenblatt writing in The Jewish Week:
One of the little-discussed effects of the economic recession on the Jewish community is that more rabbis in the later stages of their careers are finding themselves out of work.
And that’s causing a good deal of bitterness and concern in the rabbinic community about the dwindling, and changing nature, of the profession.
“We’re seeing the end of the rabbinate as we know it,” a 56-year-old Reform rabbi insisted, noting that congregations today are looking for “comfort,” not challenges. “The intellectual tradition of the pulpit has died,” said the rabbi, who asked not to be named out of concern for the prospects for his next job search.
The data is sketchy and the reasons differ as to just why the rabbinic market is falling. But a number of people close to the situation say that with Conservative and Reform synagogues losing an estimated 20 to 30 percent of their membership, rabbis increasingly are the sacrificial lambs on the altar of congregational cost-saving.
Rosenblatt’s complete article is available here.