Upcoming Calendar of Events involving Social Action/Social Justice, of interest to congregants of Temple Beth Miriam

   

Who's Who in Social Action/Social Justice movements in Reform Judaism (sourced from Wikipedia)

 

Social Justice listening campaign house meeting report

In early December 2018 TBM former president Judy Berg organized a house meeting that was hosted Rabbi Cy and Stella Stanway, attended by TBM Board members and other congregants who have had a variety of roles as social justice leaders. Judy's agenda was an initiative from the CSA that involves 360 congregations across America, to devise strategies for future efforts of the Reform Movement concerning issues of social justice. The house meeting at the Stanways featured a guided engagement conversation to brainstorm about which issues are most broadly and deeply felt. Judy's goal was to assess the role, interest, and capacities of the Reform Jewish community on issues of social justice to influence RAC's next social justice initiative. Participants shared personal stories of experiencing or witnessing injustice. Concerns included anti-semitism, women's rights, racism, gun violence, abuse, mental health and homelessness. What is it that empowers and unites Jews, that might engage us regarding issues of social justice? We heard at the meeting about the importance of community, our desire to debate and discuss, our compassion for others, out need to give back, our acceptance of others, our openness and our command to repair the world. This sets the tone for all we could accomplish. Some participants felt it was better to stick with local initiatives like getting involved with food pantries and community kitchens to support those who are food insecure, dealing with homelessness and mental health issues, confronting sexism and racism, addressing women's issues, promoting legal justice including voting rights, and helping immigrants. But the group seemed open to explore and pursue additional broader issues that are shared with Jews and others nationally and globally, such as anti-semitism, climate justice, gun violence, defense of Israel, security at houses of worship, interfaith families, and engagement of unaffiliated and all Jews to make the synagogue and Jewish practice more meaningful. Judy will report back key findings and takeaways from the TBM meeting to the RAC. The RAC will then analyze the findings from many such engagement conversations and develop a strategic campaign that will take RAC's social justice efforts through 2019 and beyond. A selected RAC campaign plan will be announced at the Consultation on Conscience event sponsored by the RAC in Washington DC in May 2019. Additionally, TBM's Social Action Committee has the opportunity to move both RAC and local initiatives forward. Judy can be reached at: judy@judithbergassociates.com   TBM board member and Social Action/Social Justice chair Phil Falcone pffalcone@gmail.com is coordinating this web page. Please send an email to add your initiative and information to this page, or for any other questions or suggestions.