The question of what sustains Diaspora Jewish life is one that every generation must ask afresh. There can be no once-and-for-all guarantees that Jewish life in any Diaspora Jewish community will be vital enough to sustain itself across the generations. Consequentially, it is important to ask what Jewish communal vitality is and how we achieve it.
As a central coordinating body in the UK Jewish community, part of the Jewish Leadership Council’s remit is to develop a long-term strategic overview of the UK Jewish community. Moreover, implicitly and explicitly, the JLC aspires for the UK Jewish community to not only survive, but to thrive. The question of Jewish communal vitality is therefore an important one for the JLC.
The JLC Community Vitality Project aims to discover and nurture this putative Jewish communal vitality consensus. By curating a series of conversations involving key figures in the JLC and those in the provision of frontline Jewish communal services, this project will attempt to draw out a set of consensual measures of Jewish communal vitality.
- To develop a series of core consensus measures of Jewish communal vitality.
- To develop policy suggestions over what needs to be done to promote and measure communal vitality.
- To create connections between professionals and activists involved in various kinds of Jewish communal work across the community.
The project will ask questions such as:
- What does a vital, flourishing, thriving Jewish community look like?
- Is the UK Jewish community current flourishing? What parts of it are not?
- In working towards communal vitality, what works, what doesn’t work and what is missing from communal provision?
- How can we measure communal vitality? What would we need to know that we do not currently know in order to be able to address these questions effectively?
- How can we ensure that the process of measuring communal vitality is embedded in Jewish community in a sustainable way?
Updates about the Community Vitality project
JLC announces Synagogue Vitality Project findings Concluding a two-year study into synagogue vitality, the Jewish Leadership Council released an in-depth report describing the current landscape and detailing the benefits of vitality, how it is created, and how it may be furthered throughout Britain. The full report can be seen here. The research report, co-authored by Prof. […]
The Jewish Leadership Council (JLC) was honoured to have been asked to contribute key sessions to the Chief Rabbis’s Regional President’s Conference held at the Yeshurun Synagogue in Manchester on 7th June 2015. JLC Chief Executive, Simon Johnson, talked about how a Shul could contribute to communal vitality, drawing on early conclusions from the JLC’s […]
What constitutes “synagogue vitality,” and how will we recognize when we see it? Why is vitality important and valuable and beneficial to members who experience it? And how is vitality developed, nurtured and sustained? Learning how to identify and promote the best features of synagogues is critical to British Jews as individuals, families and communities. […]