Updated: Sep 26, 2018
Relational Judaism, implemented as One Family, is a way of thinking, a way of doing things. It is who we strive to be. At my temple, we are in the midst of a transformation, a culture shift, from programmatical/transactional thinking, attitudes, and behavoir to a culture based on the relationship of one member to another, of member to temple, of member to Torah and God.
Believing in the value and sacredness of relationships, many aspects of life at the temple continue to be impacted. From the first contact of a newcomer to the temple through the years of being part of our temple family, the experience of belonging is much more than a transaction of paying dues and "purchasing" the rights of membership. Everyone who wishes to be a part of our temple family determines their own annual pledge which we call L'Shalom. This pledge system and the discontinuation of the building fund have removed financial barriers to membership and participation in our One Family.
Our ultimate goal is to build a community of engaged congregants, a religious home in which the connection between temple and congregant is centered on our members' needs and what is important to them. Creating the systems that promote relationships and an environment that is conducive to connecting with others are our tools for furthering this transformation.
Dr. Tussy Shnider's new book, One Congregation's Journey of Challenge: A Guide to Enriching Relationships in Your Congregation, scheduled to be published this Fall, will be helpful to congregations of all faith. Contact Dr. Shnider at Author@DrTussyShnider.com., or visit onine at www.DrTussyShnider.com.