In rabbinictransition
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Your Opinion Matters!

As you know, Holy Blossom Temple, through its Transition Steering Committee and guided by the procedures recommended by URJ, is in the process of engaging our congregants on our collective goals and desires for the person that will ultimately become our next Senior Rabbi. Many of you will have completed the congregational survey and given us some important feedback already, but the Looking Forward Committee is looking for even more information so that the Rabbinic Search Committee pinpoints the skills, character and personality that we feel we want in that important position.

The following two questions will help us build our collective understanding. You will see these questions on posters and handouts around the Temple, they will be posted on our website and they will be made available to various groups for discussion purposes. Our goal is to engage as many of us as possible over the next number of weeks so that our search matches the aspirations of us as a congregation.

Win an iPad mini – to be eligible complete and submit your responses online and your name will be entered in a draw for an iPad mini. The draw will be held on Monday June 17.
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  1. In your own words, please describe the ideal characteristics of a Senior Rabbi that you would like to see leading Holy Blossom in the future. What skills would she or he possess? What attributes would you consider to be most important? Where would you like to see him or her lead the congregation?
  2. What words or phrases would you use to best describe the type of person the future Senior Rabbi should be? Tell us about the personality traits you would value most for this position.
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You can fill in your answers below or click here to download a short questionnaire that can be printed, completed, and dropped into a Suggestion Box in the Temple’s Ava Road Lobby.

All postings to the electronic suggestion box must be submitted in a member’s name and confirmed via email address provided. Please clearly state in your response if you would like your comment to be forwarded privately to the Looking Forward Committee or published on the website. All published comments are subject to existing moderation policies established for the website by Holy Blossom Temple.

These questions are to solicit commentary about rabbinic characteristics generally and not a forum to discuss particular candidates. We will not post commentary that makes reference to specific individuals.

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Showing 39 comments
  • Alberto Quiroz
    Reply

    After reading all the comments in the blog, I took all the adjectives in the posted messages, put them in an excel sheet for the purpose of sorting them and listing them in alphabetical order. After eliminating the duplicates the list was reduced to 147 different attributes that we would like to see in our future Rabbi.

    While the provision of a specific list may simplify the job of the search committee, I wonder, where will we find the perfect Rabbi? Who is youthful yet mature, who can be provoking in sermons yet sensitive, who can bring a new paradigm but be respectful of HBT traditions, who is a scholar and personable, old to be wise and younger than 50, oh! Almost forgot to add, married with family.

    Aside from the fact that the perfect person probably does not exist, maybe as a community we should ask ourselves different questions.

    • Will the structure of our Synagogue today be the structure of the synagogue that will exist ten years from now? And if it isn’t why would we want to continue under that structure?

    • Knowing that younger generations want a different relationship with synagogues; do we really need a single senior Rabbi? Or, are we better off investing those resources in other types of leadership and programming (whether rabbinical or educational) geared to attract younger crowds that will help our growth and ensure our sustainability?

    In the end, whether it is one single Senior Rabbi or other leaders, I’d like all the members of Holy Blossom Temple to realize that it will take the efforts of each and one of us to make HBT the greatest synagogue we want it to be. Therefore my invitation to unite, support and rally behind our future leader whether he/she has 100%, 90% or less of the 147 skills and personality traits we are looking for.

  • Ron Hart
    Reply

    First and foremost I want a Reform Rabbi! I have not been happy as the synagogue has veered farther and farther right. For example, I don’t approve of the increase in Hebrew prayer reading at services. I don’t read Hebrew nearly fast enough to keep up, and understand little of what is being said.
    I was shocked, appalled and baffled to see the new prayer book includes the prayer “Thank God I wasn’t born a women.” I always thought Reform Judaism came about as a response to such prayers. Also I thought Reform Judaism sees the Torah as the work of humans, not the work of God.
    He or she must be interested in social action. Should be a community leader in Jewish and secular issues.
    Word or phrases to describe our new rabbi: Mensch, leader, good inter-personal skills, energetic,passionate about his/her job.

    • Rabbi Yael Splansky
      Reply

      Dear Ron,
      Thank you for your input here. Very helpful.

      It’s true that there is more Hebrew in our services than when you were growing up at Holy Blossom. But most of it is set to music. Of course, you know this, because you sing in our choir and help to lead the congregation in the Hebrew prayers. The melody carries the words and invites us to participate.

      There is one clarification I’d like to make. We do not include the traditional blessing of thanks “for not making me a woman.” Some Reform prayerbooks include two alternative blessings for men and women to choose from. One thanks God “for making me a man,” the other “for making me a woman.” Our prayerbook, Siddur Pirchei Kodesh, however, includes another alternative. We invite both men and women to recite the traditional blessing assigned to women, thanking God “for making me according to Your will.” This inclusive language works for everyone, including those who do not identify with gender labels. You can find additional commentary on these special morning blessings on page 41 of our prayerbook. And of course, I’d be more than happy to discuss these themes with you at any time.

      I admire you for giving such attention to the “words of our mouth and the meditations of the heart.”

      Fondly,
      Rabbi Yael Splansky

  • Ann Rosenfield
    Reply

    Our newest senior Rabbi needs to be a leader for our time and to build our future – and right now we need someone who is a collaborator and unifier who has a clear vision we can rally behind.

    The senior Rabbi should be someone who has complementary skills to those of the existing professional leadership.

    The senior Rabbi will be
    Excellent communicator
    Excellent listener
    Knows their own strengths and limits
    Fun
    Creative
    Leads by example

  • Craig Perkins
    Reply

    HBT needs a senior rabbi who has insightful, challenging and thought provoking views on issues relating to Canadian society, Judaism and Israel; who will initiate broad dialogue within the congregation and the Jewish community on tough issues, in ways that draw in young and old, rich and poor, influential and unengaged members and potential members; who is a scholar and master teacher as well as a good listener; who will work to connect HBT members with each other and with the broader community; who has heart and warmth.

  • Mariam Leitman
    Reply

    I would like HBT’s new Senior Rabbi to be a superb scholar with a warm heart. Excellence in scholarship is a value that HBT has often stood for and I believe that it is a Jewish value worth continuing to stand for. This scholarship should be paired with a warm heart because, unfortunately, HBT also has a reputation for coldness. Warming up the congregational community cannot be the task of a Senior Rabbi alone, but a Senior Rabbi for whom it is a priority that HBT’s congregation become warmer and more welcoming could be invaluable.

    Like Jeff Denaburg, I would welcome a Senior Rabbi at the forefront of Jewish issues. Today (and without implicating Jeff), these include interfaith marriage. I would welcome a Senior Rabbi who is willing to initiate thoughtful and open discussion of a hot button issue like this, which is on the hearts and minds of Canadian Jewish families but is taboo for the Toronto Reform Rabbinate. Not so long ago, it was taboo for Toronto Reform Rabbis to solemnize same sex marriages between two Jews. This is now possible because Rabbis agreed to talk, among themselves and with their congregants. I am not saying here that I want a Senior Rabbi who is committed to performing interfaith marriages. I am saying I want a Senior Rabbi who is open to change and models the belief that Torah is a living tree to those who hold by her.

    Finally, like many others, I hope for a Senior Rabbi who will embrace HBT’s superb musical heritage and its use of Hebrew in services, and who will encourage congregational participation at all services.

  • Peter Dan
    Reply

    Our new Rabbi

    There are many attributes that a Rabbi should have and I am sure that along the way in this process all of them will be listed by someone or other. Almost all candidates will possess all of these attributes in different proportions.

    We need a rabbi who is good at attracting members, who communicates well with them and who can speak to the broader public with some gravity. He should be a scholar, a teacher and a fund raiser and so on and so on…

    The question really is that of proportions. To decide on that we need to consider what is the most important function of a Temple or Synagogue.

    For me the most important function is that of a place for prayer.

    Why?

    You can have social gatherings in many places. You can campaign for Israel in many venues. You can help your fellow man in social outreach programs in many organisations. You don’t have to be Jewish for any of these functions; none of these are inherently only Jewish activities. Indeed you can even study Torah (Bible) outside the setting of a Temple or Synagogue nor do you have to be Jewish to do so.

    Our prayer services are the only inherently Jewish activity that we do in such a setting. So much so, that any place where at least 10 Jewish people gather to recite prayer becomes in our tradition a “Mishkan” a place of worship a Synagogue if only for the duration of the service.

    So when you ask about the attributes of a Rabbi I will say he should be a person who leads by example, who takes daily prayer seriously. He should be a person who can connect the words of the daily prayers to the words of the Torah and Talmud on one end’ and daily mundane acts of observance and good deeds for Israel for our Community and the Community of mankind at large on the other. Such a person would naturally attract recognition and loyalty in my opinion.

    A chief Rabbi of a temple such as ours needs to bear the responsibility of his office 24/7. It does not mean he needs to be on duty all the time, but must bear the responsibility that the necessary duties are fulfilled all the time.

  • Elaine Givertz
    Reply

    A person who is committed to Jewish learning with a willingness to share their knowledge with congregants through study and from the pulpit and whose scholarship is recognized both in the Reform Jewish world as well as the community at large.
    A natural born leader who inspires others including our children with their vision who is able to invoke commitment from all levels in the congregation to become involved with projects for which they have a passion.
    A decent human being who brings compassion to the rabbinate so that congregants can trust in their genuine caring, honesty, integrity and humility.
    A person with excellent communication skills including a good sense of humor.
    A hard working, experienced individual who has a proven, highly successful track record.

  • George Steiner
    Reply

    The rabbi should be one who unites the congregation; is warm and compassionate; can communicate as a human being on an individual and on a congregational level; has the maturity to understand the congregants and their needs; is not “holier than thou”; is able to appeal to younger members; can build up the religious school to one that has teaches about Judaism, Israel, human values, and our place among the societies of the world, and at the same time make it enjoyable for the young students; can understand the past turmoils of HB and lead us to a new future; is a leader; is able to relate our issues to those of the world at large

  • Eileen Cole
    Reply

    I guess it has all been said,but for me the most important traits would be the ability to deliver an interesting, thought-provoking sermon from the pulpit, and be a warm,welcoming person off the dais.
    Perhaps, if she or he will be counselling, it would be helpful to have someone who is married with children, so that the help comes from personal knowledge, as well as training.

  • Tobe Blumenstein
    Reply

    I’m an ex-member but it would interesting to hear the qualities people do not want.

  • Paula Warren
    Reply

    I agree with all that has been said up to now. I would like our Senior Rabbi to be a Mench, who shows warmth and leadership. This requires good interpersonal skills with an ability to listen and follow through. I really want to see leadership by example. I do want to be able to follow and understand sermons!

  • Stephen Posen
    Reply

    Leadership
    Intelligence and knowledge of the communuty and world / Jewish affairs
    Charisma both privately and when speaking publicly
    A vocal supporter of Israel
    Ability to be and appear to be a leader and spokesperson for the Jewish Community
    Scholarship
    Warmth

  • Arieh Waldman
    Reply

    Thank you for this opportunity. I pray the thoughtful comments by the congregation will not be wasted.

    I want a Master teacher, not a Professor.
    I want an educator, not a lecturer.
    I want an action-provoking individual, not a book writer.
    I want a leader by example, not a talker.
    I want a Senior Rabbi who will minister to the personal needs of our congregation, not spend time building up his/her name in the wider community.
    I want a Jewishly-educated Senior Rabbi, one who is firmly in the centre of the spectrum of Judaism and a Lover of Israel.
    I want a Senior Rabbi who is comfortable teaching in the Main Sanctuary as well as in the Family Service. In fact, I want a Senior Rabbi who is not only comfortable but WILL be in the Family Service as well as in the Main Sanctuary. And I want a Senior Rabbi (and team) that will take his/her regular turn in leading Tot Shabbat, Shabbat Fusion, Family Services or the Religious School services.
    I want a Senior Rabbi between 40 and 50 years old. Old enough to have experienced some pain and young enough to still be in touch with those born after 1950.
    Given two equal candidates, one male and one female, I would prefer female.
    Thank you.

  • Jeff Denaburg
    Reply

    Skills and attributes of the Senior Rabbi:
    – Maintain HBT as a leader in education, both our Religious School and our adult education programs
    – Original thinker, at the forefront of Jewish issues
    – Has a vision for HBT, communicates it well and elicits support for the vision
    – Transmits a love of Judaism
    – Ahavat Yisrael
    – Contributes to social discussion, and even takes leadership positions, in the broader community
    – A people person

    Personality traits:
    – Strong interpersonal skills
    – Leads and inspires
    – Practical and rational
    – Sees all angles and points of view on an issue
    – Empathetic

  • Saul Ship
    Reply

    I am not fully convinced that we need to hire a Senior Rabbi from the outside, partly due to the cost.

    If the decision is confirmed to go outside, to me one of the main reasons would be to assert HBT’s role as the premier Reform congregation in Canada, which is looked upon to provide leadership to the liberal Jewish community. Our Senior Rabbi should be a person who can provide that leadership in terms of both Jewish and liberal social issues.

  • Michael & Janet Ryval
    Reply

    1. A solid understanding of issues that impact Jewish families–such as assimilation and continuity. An ability to apply the wisdom of the Sages to 21st century issues and challenges. Excellent communication skills. A scholar with clarity of thought. Able to engage with all congregants, regardless of age and means. Open to new ideas.
    2. Needs to be a family person who can be a strong role model for families and young people. Approachable, inspirational, compassionate, a mensch, supportive, and has a good sense of humor!

  • Debbie Gurfinkel
    Reply

    Our new rabbi should be a natural-born teacher in the broadest sense of the word; someone who loves Judaism and the Jewish people and motivates others to learn because this love is so apparent and so inspiring.

    A teacher can have multiple roles acting as either a “sage on a stage” or a “guide from the side.” I hope our new rabbi is equally skilled in both roles and is wise enough to know which is best in a given situation.

  • Batia Tabak
    Reply

    Wisdom acquired with life experience and learning
    Jewish and general knowledge, acquired with learning and experience
    Articulate and engaging to share his/her knowledge and education with others
    Social, “peoples” skills
    Humble
    Mentchslechkait
    Leadership in the Shul Community
    Leadership in the broader Community
    Mediator –

  • Jeff Baker
    Reply

    Leadership! In a word. Being able to speak to every constituency and demographic in a very large congregation. Making each congregant feel, even for a brief moment, that they are welcome, valued and as much a part of the community as anyone else.

    Friendliness and openness are crucial. There are many congregations catering to every manner of opinion and tradition. In order to save this one, it is imperative that the senior rabbi, by example, creates a “big tent” for all members.

  • Cheryl Manny
    Reply

    I would like to see a rabbi who genuinely cares about people, who is warm and loving and who can communicate that to everyone – someone who will include everyone – the congregation is a family and there are people who have needs – there are different age levels in this family and at each stage of life they have special needs the young, teens, young adults, adults and seniors – someone who sees the role as a vocation and not a job – someone who has empathy, compassionate, joyful, and caring especially about the people who do not come regularly to shul. They need to be well read on life today as well as the history of Judaism – in other words know about the difficulties facing jews as we try to find peace in the middle east – to know the threats we are facing from terrorism – as it spreads around the world – so someone who is actually living in the 21st century and gets it. Above all someone with a vision of the future as we try to move forward.
    The special qualities – are caring, compassionate, empathy, understanding, a listener, kind, thoughtful, inclusive, and some one who likes people and is a good communicator of all these attributes.

  • Phyllis Wintraub
    Reply

    I think my wishes for a New Senior Rabbi cannot be expressed more completely or thoughtfully than Mike Morgulis did, with a couple of additions.
    – a Rabbi who can give a sermon without quoting a book or a sage. Who has enough to say worth hearing that we will be hanging on his/her every word. Perhaps even having a laugh or two.
    -willing to attempt different forms of “sermons”– such as a dialogue with the congregation which will engage everyone who wishes to express an opinion on the topic being spoken about.
    – a love and understanding of not just liturgical music, but maybe even a passion for music in general. An abiding respect for the Cantor,both as an equal partner(perhaps even more than equal)in the worship experience and in the hierarchy of the clergy.
    -one who does not pay lip service to public events at HBT, and shows up most of the time–not grudgingly attending briefly and leaving after his/her attendance has been noted.
    -one who does not only engage people of means or like intellect, while ignoring all others or speaking to them perfunctorily.
    Add that to Mike’s wish list and we will have the Rabbi that HBT needs and deserves. Respectfully submitted.

  • Mike Morgulis
    Reply

    Response to #1:

    A Senior Rabbi must possess a good working knowledge of Hebrew, must know or be familiar with, or be willing to learn the minchagim of Holy Blossom, must be a willing partner with the lay-leadership and current leadership i.e. a quarterback, not a tyrant. While some may think that a “presence” is a good thing, there should be little ego emanating from this person. That’s not to say that I believe that they must have zero ego or attitude, rather that they should be an example of how removal of ego allows one to communicate, learn, study more effectively.

    The Senior Rabbi should possess a clear goal for the future of the congregation, a sense of continued traditions, an ability to help bring our form of Reform Judaism back to the realm of meaningful observant Judaism through a Reform lens. I would hope that our Senior Rabbi be inward looking first, to help our congregation first rather than use our shul and congregation as a springboard from which to project a religious/political agenda outwards into the public domain.

    A Senior Rabbi must be able to communicate and interact with all levels of the shul, from pre-school through all grades of religious school, all of the youth groups, 20’s and 30’s, families, seniors and terminal care congregants. Although all of our rabbis get slotted into appropriate age-groups, there is not enough cross-representation sometimes, meaning that the adjunct rabbi for example, should definitely visit with HABSTY, the senior rabbi should definitely visit with JK or SK students at religious school, and the assistant rabbi should be able to get involved with the Family Services crowd as well as Brotherhood and/or Sisterhood etc. These are merely examples, but my feeling is that the Senior Rabbi should be familiar with everyone, and not merely allow compartmentalization, or rely upon that as a structure. Again, quarterback the team.

    I’d like our Senior Rabbi to be as self-effacing, diplomatic, caring, sensitive and well-spoken as the Rabbis who currently serve with us. It is what they refrain from saying, in addition to what they carefully say, that imparts the most wisdom upon me and sets the best example of human nature before us all to take for ourselves.

    I do not believe that gender has any bearing upon this position, nor should it even be a factor under consideration. Skin colour and sexual preference is also not relevant. This is all about personality, experience, rolling up the sleeves, doing and not merely talking, leading by example, wisdom, empathy, sympathy, being a good Jew, and being a good human.
    Our Senior Rabbi should not necessarily be a stoic, beard-stroking philosopher, nor a stand-up comedian, but should in-fact be able to carry those traits as tools in the toolbox which they bring to the job. They should practise what they preach, they should be involved, up front and not in the wings, and they should not be too guarded but also not an open book.

    Response #2

    – present
    – genuine
    – passionate
    – involved
    – approachable
    – sincere
    – self-effacing
    – knowledgeable
    – honest
    – wise
    – humble
    – katamar
    – insightful, but simultaneously foresighted
    – brilliant yet grounded

  • Julie Schwartz
    Reply

    I am hoping for a HBT Senior Rabbi who is:
    old enough to be wise and young enough to be smart;
    decent enough to be collegial and courageous enough to keep us in line;
    and
    engaging enough to be approachable, and distant enough to inspire awe.

  • Pnina Margolese
    Reply

    I believe that our choice for Senior Rabbi above all should be a “Mensch”, be able to relate to ALL congregants, not just those with means, be open to all members, be they married, single, or other. Be able to preach with intelligence, but not over the heads of those of us who attend regular services. Be a visionary, motivator, be a family man/woman, or at least have a partner. Be warm and open and accessible. Be able to motive a board of directors in the right direction. Have a great knowledge of Judaism and be able to teach. Care deeply for Israel. In other words, be a superhuman. If there is someone out there with all these attributes we would be lucky to find him/her.

  • Dorothy Aaron
    Reply

    I tend to agree with all David Gershon says, especially passionate, charismatic and engaging. I would value clear oral communication, especially from the bima, above writing skills, and emotional intellignece above intellectualism. An ability to interpret current events, especially but not exclusively Israeli affairs, and their meaning for today’s Toronto Jews, would be appreciated — in addition to how Torah informs our lives.

    (I am assuming the rabbi would also be a good teacher,and well-versed in Reform Jewish knowledge and practices.)

  • Reply

    We would look for the following qualities in a Senior Rabbi:(not necessarily in that order)

    Scholarship

    Ability to teach and lecture, and communicate his/her views to the Congregation and to the Community at large and to deliver interesting, thought provoking and topical sermons.

    Approachability and pastoral leadership

    A positive attitude to Israel and to Zionism

    A creative approach to liturgy and prayer.

    An appreciation for the part that music plays in our worship

    An ability to raise funds and recruit new members

    An appeal to children and young people

    An understanding for the concerns of senior members of the congregation

    A positive attitude to the relationship between our congregation and other streams of Judaism, and our non Jewish neighbours.

    A capable,understanding and considerate guide and manager to more junior clergy and to other departments that would report to him/her.

    Words and Phrases:

    A sympathetic, learned and approachable leader.

  • Gary Griesdorf
    Reply

    1. Person should be knowledgible in world events, sensitive to different views of our congregation rather than picking sides, concern with all congregants needs (young, middle-aged and seniors). Sermons should include thoughts on current world events, not just lectures on what happened hundred of years ago, be inspiring and thoughtful.
    2. Motivating, charismatic, a good listener, one who can bring congregational members together rather than split them apart.

  • David Gershon
    Reply

    Thank you so much for reaching out for these opinions…

    Years ago I would have asked for a senior rabbi who is scholarly, well-published, a leader/philosopher. Now, honestly, I think none of these things are exceedingly important to me or my family or what I need from a synagogue — or, frankly, what I sense is needed with the many families and friends I have known over the years at HB. I think what IS needed is an exceptional ability to ENGAGE the congregation. Yes, the ability to engage the shul in learning and fundraising, but also — and critically — the ability to engage from the bima. We need a leader whose passion for prayer is infectious, who can look the congregation in the eye and lead them in a conversation with God, who is not afraid to say hello from the bima or to show joy. Detached intellectualism will kill our shul slowly. Engaged passion, worship and study will give it life.

    If possible, I would also like to see a leader who is not coming cold to Holy Blossom, but who has been a part of our story and who can hit the ground running during this critical part of our history. I would like to see a leader who understands and embraces that Holy Blossom is not just one congregation, but is a mosaic of many smaller communities under its roof. It takes a real leader to embrace that diversity and not be threatened by it. There are many different ways that our congregants connect to HB. Each one of them needs to be nurtured and grown.

    Personality Traits of Our New Senior Rabbi…
    ENGAGING, ENGAGING, ENGAGING
    Passionate (about Judaism, Jewish worship, Jewish study)
    Charismatic
    Intelligent
    Well-versed in Jewish worship, tradition, study

  • Barbara Wade Rose
    Reply

    Re 1. Holy Blossom’s incoming rabbi would ideally be someone dynamic. This is not inconsequential: a dynamic rabbi draws congregants IN and sends interesting ideas OUT to media, groups and individuals. He or she is an advocate, not a judge. How will we as Jews live — how will today’s Jewish people survive, with all their challenges — in the 21st century? not just ethically or with advocacy, but with joy and pride?

    Re 2. Barack Obama with a kippah.

  • Sydney Sennet
    Reply

    Question #2:

    – a strong LEADER for all congregants, staff and assistants, involved completly in all matter of a religeous nature including, services, holidays, celebrations, and other functions. He should be able to invite and delegate to trusted assistants and leaders of the many departments.
    – Charismatic, compassionate, but have a presence of aloofness to have those below his position to feed from his strengths.
    – have wisdom from studies and experiences and willingness to share with the congregants. He must have an “open door” policy so his minions are comfortable to seek his advice or opinion and believe it is a good one worth hearing.
    – believe that we are Reform shul and not try to turn it into a conservative or orthodox. We were always proud of being a member of Holy Blossom Temple which distinguished itself from the others, but related well and worked with the others. We respected all other factions and in turn hoped they would respect us.
    – be open to the ideas of others, whether accepting them or not.

  • Vanessa Yakobson
    Reply

    Ideal characteristics, skills and attributes:
    – charismatic personality
    – strong visionary leadership style and capabilities
    – ability to galvanize support and develop consensus from various sectors of the community
    – likeability
    – ability to inspire youth and young families and relate to their modern-day needs
    – smart
    – inspiring and motivating
    – deep understanding of what it takes to make a synagogue successful (including financial acumen and fundraising skill)

    The best type of person:
    One who is a motivating, charismatic and compelling leader, and who is able to generate broad-based support. One who attracts members because people want to hear what he/she has to say. One who is able to set a vision for Holy Blossom that reflects our history and recognizes today’s realities, and who is effective at leading members and staff to realize the vision.

  • Ben Marmur
    Reply

    rab·bi
    /ˈrabˌī/
    Noun
    A Jewish scholar or teacher, esp. one who studies or teaches Jewish law.
    A person appointed as a Jewish religious leader.

    This and the ability to perform as a master of ceremonies.

  • Sandy Atlin
    Reply

    1. IDEAL CHARACTERISTICS:
    – The Rabbi will be a thoughtful,knowledgeable and inspiring speaker and writer.
    – S/he will aptly represent our congregation’s face to the community at large.
    – The Rabbi will demonstrate an experiential understanding of Jewish family issues. S/he will be a pastor to congregants.
    – S/he will support outreach and programs which members define as of social action importance to Judaism and the Jewish community as well as farther afield with our neighbours of all faiths.
    – The Rabbi will teach members if and how Torah informs our modern lives.
    – S/he will bring us closer to Israeli issues and ideas.

    2. Personality traits I value in a Rabbi:
    – intellect
    – empathy
    – humour
    – creativity
    – passion for the work

    Is there a person who embodies all of these skills and traits? If so, I sincerely hope s/he will be willing to lead us into the future. S.A.

  • Sandra Merovic
    Reply

    For me the characteristics of a Senior Rabbi are: Integrity, charisma, knowledge, empathy.

    I am looking for a rabbi that sees every member as unique and important without knowing or caring about the economic status of the member.

    The best way to describe is: A Rabbi that you feel the door open to come and trust.

  • Johanna Faulk
    Reply

    I would like to see a youthful and dynamic Rabbi who can bring people into the shul. S/he needs to be welcoming to LGBT, youth, inter-faith marriages – lots of groups that have been over-looked. Not just sympathetic, but actively welcoming. We need a new paradigm – HBT is very siloed and we need a healer with some gravitas.

    The words and phrases I would use: present; engaged; inclusive; leadership; vision; compelling

  • joe kronick
    Reply

    lets attract one with warmth, and a sense of community awareness. Some scolarship would be good as well.

  • Debra Bennett
    Reply

    In your own words, please describe the ideal characteristics of a Senior Rabbi that you would like to see leading Holy Blossom in the future. What skills would she or he possess? What attributes would you consider to be most important? Where would you like to see him or her lead the congregation?

    Most important attributes: honesty, sincerity, curiosity, acceptance, engagement in meaningful discussion

    Skills: empathy, bringing people together in common purpose, inclusion (as opposed to rejection), seeing the unique gifts and skills of everyone

    Lead the congregation: toward meaningful tikun olam, including long-term, multi-faceted projects such as pluralism

    What words or phrases would you use to best describe the type of person the future Senior Rabbi should be? Tell us about the personality traits you would value most for this position.

    sees possibilities not barriers.

  • John Phillips
    Reply

    The new rabbi must be personable privately and be an excellent public speaker (ie sermon). He must be able to communicate clearly and congenially with all of our diverse congregants.

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