JRF is proud to announce that the Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation (JRC) in Evanston, Ill. has been awarded First Place (tie) in the Jewish Telegraphic Agency's Greenie Beanie Awards, a special competition in honor of Tu B’Shevat. And on February 6-7, at JRC's Tu B'Shevat Seder & Scholar-in-Residence Shabbat, the congregation will be presented with the Shalom Center's Green Menorah Award. read more »
As part of JRF's Sustainable Synagogue Initiative, JRC was acknowledged at the JRF 2008 biennial convention in Boston in November for being the "greenest shul in North America" and for its ongoing green policy development.
In 1990, JRF passed a movement-wide resolution on the environment and congregational life. Since 2006 we offered conference calls and resources on Sustainable Synagogues and Living a Jewish Life Rooted in Ecological Values. read more »
As part of the Sustainable Synagogue Initiative and the 2008 JRF Biennial convention, we honored 15 of the individuals and communities leading the way in our movement in integrating Jewish values and religious life, and sustainable communal policies and practices. Read more to see the full list!
From constructing new buildings out of recycled materials, to installing a compact-fluorescent ner tamid; from joining together in song, to discovering what musar can teach us about solving global climate change, JRF congregations are engaged in protecting their natural environment, reducing their carbon footprint, and ensuring a inheritance for those who come after them.
In partnership with COEJL and JCPA, our hope is to motivate and educate our congregations in sustainable practices, with the goal of reaching 100 percent participation in the years ahead. Building upon the resolution on the environment passed by JRF in 1990, our movement continues to labor towards facilitating a globally sustainable approach to living in faith community.
During this second week of Omer teaching, we are highlighting these many environmental sustainability initiatives taking place ...
Below, as an attachment, you will find a PDF resource packet and the recording from our environmental sustainability - PEARL tele-conference call, featuring:
As you read through the teaching, feel free to add comments on this page about your own experiences or use the listserve or web page to ask questions.
April 29, 2008 - 2:18pm — Rabbi Shawn Zevit Questions for Sustainability
On Mon, Apr 28, 2008 at 12:07 PM, Rabbi Shawn Zevit wrote:
Q. 1) If you imagine yourself at the end of this year, what action(s) do you most want to change in your personal lifestyle to include a
sustainability consciousness? What about as a faith community?
Q. 2) What ideas included in the Sustainability packet inspire or challenge your current personal and communal way of life and your impact on the local and larger eco-systems of which you are a part?
For additional resources on the Omer Learning Initiative or Greening Synagogues, go to our environment page at http://www.jrf.org/climate
From Seedtime to Harvest:
From the values and spirit of tikkun to community building and sustained action read more »
Beginning on the eve of the second day of Pesach, we are instructed by our tradition to count the days of the “Omer” until the fiftieth day, which is when the first barley crop would be harvested. It is also the Jewish holiday of Shavuot when, according to our tradition, the Jewish People received the Torah at Mt. Sinai. The counting of the Omer is a bridge between Pesach and Shavuot – between a moment of liberation and a moment of self-definition and direction at the beginning of our evolution as a religious civilization. It is an opportunity to deepen our study and close the gap between ideas and action for the tikkun (rebalancing, repair) of the challenges we face in our world.
Mazal tov to Rabbi Brant Rosen and the Jewish Reconstructionist Synagogue (JRC) in Evanston, IL -- boldly going where no synagogue has gone before.
As noted in a JTA Breaking News story, JRC is in the process of applying to receive the highest rating from the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program for the congregation's new building.
The "platinum" rating is being sought for features such as using recycled concrete, sensor-controlled lighting and a parking space reserved for a hybrid car. JRC's energy costs will be about 45 percent less than a typical synagogue of the same size, the report said.
For full teachings from JRC on their process see:
Click here to register for this and other PEARL tele-conference sessions.
Below is a growing list of programmatic resources to aid congregations in their pursuit of Tikkun Olam, organized by issue, and type of resource.
The initial issues included are:
These represent the most common issues being addressed by Congregation Based Community Organizing (CBCO) groups throughout the country.
With the enthusiasm around JRF's Omer Learning Initiative, as well as the solid response of JRF congregations in the Climate Change Initiative, JRF is continues to deepen its greening work with member communities next year.
Our hope is to motivate and educate our congregations in sustainable practices, with the goal of reaching 100 percent participation in the years ahead.
Learn about the Sustainable Synagogue Initiative on the JRF website's environment pages at jrfSustainable_Synagogue_Resources.
For more information contact Rabbi Shawn Zevit, Director of Outreach and Tikkun Olam, SZevit@jrf.org
Shir Hadash of Milwaukee is slating the upcoming "shemita" or "Sabbatical" year as a "green" year for its congregation. The central theme of the year will be to explore how we as Jews can give our stressed and endangered world a rest. An ad hoc committee chaired by two Shir Hadash members will oversee and coordinate events, classes, educational and ritual opportunities all tied to the yearly round of holidays and holy days of the Jewish calendar. read more »
In 2007 our focus was on Sustainability (balancing environmental, social, economic and spiritual life in our congregations and larger communities). See the text packet atached to this post.
Rabbis, Hazzanim (cantors), Educators and members of JRF congregations commented on classic Jewish texts in the light of the sustainability work being done in their congregations.