After soliciting and distilling feedback from 1,500+ individuals (through focus groups, Biennial sessions, Board meetings, the RJ Magazine Think Tank, and a survey of unaffiliated Jews), the 30-member Reform Leadership Council (RLC) Think Tank—a collaboration of the URJ, HUC-JIR, and CCAR—has created this draft of the first-ever Vision Statement articulating what it means to be a Reform Jew and to be part of the Reform Movement.
“Our goal was a Vision Statement that encompasses our reality and our dream of the future,” says URJ Senior Vice President Rabi Daniel Freelander. “We want individuals and groups to consider if and how it matches their own aspirations about Reform Judaism, the Reform Movement, and their own Jewishness.”
The RLC welcomes your feedback at urj.org/thinktank. Responses will be considered through October and the final statement disseminated in Spring 2013. The RLC hopes that member congregations will reflect on this vision, adopt it, and share it widely, teaching and engaging Jewish seekers in Reform Judaism’s message of unity, meaning, and authenticity.
In addition, as part of the Think Tank conversation, hundreds of Reform leaders, congregants, and others visited the RJ magazine website to contribute a diversity of perspectives and ideas about strengthening our Movement. In the Winter 2011 edition (reformjudaismmag.org/winter_2011) we published “Reforming Judaism: Voices from the People, Part I,” a sampling of these thoughtful viewpoints and suggestions on four topics. Now, you can read Part II—Movement-wide reflections and analyses on three more subjects.
Proposed Vision Statement
Reform Judaism is the living expression of Torah and tradition in our modern lives. Reform Judaism welcomes all who seek Jewish connection to pursue the fullness of a life inspired by compassion and our Divine mission to do what is right and just.
In our sacred communities, Reform Jews make thoughtful and informed choices about how we put our values into action. We explore our spirituality, and we engage in reflection, critical study, and sacred acts in order to renew our living covenant with God and the Jewish people.
The organizations of the Reform Movement exist in partnership with one another to nurture individual Jews, to sustain our innovative and diverse communities, and to shape our shared destiny with Israel and fellow Jews around the world.