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October 5: Our Rabbis Today

10/05/2023 04:50:22 PM

Oct5

Fellow Congregants,

As we’ve been listening to you in both organized and casual settings, one question comes up again and again: what about our current rabbis? Indeed, we are fortunate to have three long-serving and talented rabbis at Beth Am. As of this writing, Rabbi Sarah and Rabbi Jon have both asked to be considered for the Senior Rabbi position. Rabbi Heath has indicated that he is eager to continue at Beth Am in his current role, for which we are grateful.  

Our objective as a Search Committee is to ensure that we get the very best rabbi to lead Beth Am into the future. In addition, we commit to treating all candidates with kindness — especially those whom we already know and love. This means that we need a process that is both thorough and respectful. Our plan to achieve this is as follows:

  • All candidates will be evaluated against the same criteria, which were published last week.
  • The process for all candidates, internal and external, will be similar, with extraneous elements removed. (For instance, we will not ask our current clergy to demonstrate sermons.)
  • We will refrain from making a final recommendation to the Board until all candidates, both internal and external, have been reviewed. While this is more labor intensive, ultimately the congregation is better served by a comprehensive process.

As you can imagine, this is a sensitive time for all involved, particularly for our current clergy. You can help make the situation less awkward by not allowing the search to dominate conversations, and by continuing to treat all of our clergy with the care and tenderness they deserve. 

You are always welcome to share your perspectives with the Search Committee, as we’ve said many times. Be assured that we are already aware that each of our rabbis has many fans: the depth of your insight, particularly around specific interactions that may not be generally visible, is more helpful than the quantity of emails we receive.

Want to talk informally about the search? Join us at the First Friday Pre-Neg tomorrow night at 5:30 PM in the Sanctuary Foyer; we’d love to see you there. Of course, you can always send comments or questions to search@betham.org. Our next update will be released on Thursday, October 19.

L'Shalom,

Deb Radin, Ben Lloyd and Loree Farrar
Senior Rabbi Search Co-chairs

Wed, June 12 2024 6 Sivan 5784