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Choose Judaism

Posted on 10/25/2013 @ 12:50 PM

Will our children and our grandchildren identify as Jews?

Jeff Koch and Arielle Weisberg of Liberty Region are challenging their teens at their Spirit Convention to take a stance on the statement: According to the recent Pew Research Center study “A Portrait of Jewish Americans,” more and more Jewish Americans are identifying as “having no religion” and are choosing not to raise their children Jewish. This should be a cause for concern in the American Jewish community and we need to take action. (Argue for or against this statement).

(If you haven’t read it already, the Pew Study is an important read. If you’d like other opinions, check out EJewishPhilanthropy's series of responses, read this response by Rabbi Arthur Green, or simply google “pew Jewish study responses.”)

Would you take the “pro” or “con” stance on Liberty’s statement above? Are you concerned? Do you think we need to take new action, beyond what we’re already doing?

One of our most central jobs in BBYO is to help our teens and their families develop stronger Jewish identities (Educational Framework: Identify). Regardless of your position on the study, let’s take a moment to be proud of all that we have done. How many teens have come through our programs who would have left their Jewish identity behind, but who have decided – thanks to you and because of BBYO – to choose Judaism!

(This Shabbat message was written by Ira J. Dounn, Director of Jewish Enrichment of the Northeast Hub.)

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