I am delighted to let you know that Rabbi Julie Schonfeld, Executive Vice President of the Rabbinical Assembly, recently announced the launch of the Rabbinical Assembly-Camp Ramah Partnership, a renewed effort by the RA to promote the Ramah experience as a crucial ingredient for Jewish identity growth. On Monday, May 24, I will address the Rabbinical Assembly Convention to discuss this exciting new initiative.
I encourage you to read Rabbi Schonfeld's wonderful article below. This article, emphasizing the importance of Ramah camping, appeared in the April-May 2010 RA Newsletter and announced the establishment of this joint venture.
With the approach of summer, I am delighted to direct your attention to the launching of an important new venture: the Rabbinical Assembly-Camp Ramah Partnership.
This new collaboration seeks to take one of the most successful institutions in contemporary Jewish life to a new level of excellence through the worldwide influence of the Conservative rabbinate....
...Numerous studies confirm the Jewish summer camp experience as one of the most potent transmitters of Jewish identity and Ramah as one of the most successful Jewish camping models.
While summer can sometimes be a quieter time for Jewish institutions, giving way to preparation for the Yamim Nora'im, and the activities of the new year, Camp Ramah teaches us that summer time is a precious opportunity to share with our people what it means to put our lives on "Jewish time." Camp Ramah's model of infusing every aspect of "regular life" at camp with holiness, whether it be tefillot in an exquisite setting or bringing Jewish values to the intense relationships of camp bunks, has had a transformative impact on tens of thousands of Jews. There is no disputing the fact that Ramah alumni number not only many of the leaders in Jewish communal life, but are also dugmaot of yiddishkeit throughout our communities.
I had a beautiful day today. I stood with my sister, a passionate rabbi serving the U.S. Navy as a chaplain, at the World War II Memorial in Washington D.C. We remembered our grandfather of blessed memory, who fought for America and shared hard-earned wisdom with his children and grandchildren.
I looked to my right and saw the Washington Monument. Looked to my left at the Lincoln Memorial. I read quotes engraved on massive stones. And I felt, to my core, one sad feeling: too much war.
Too. Much. War.
The quotes and certain retellings of history would have me believe that we fought for pure purposes: we fought for religious freedom, we fought to end slavery, we fought for freedom for all humanity, we fought to end tyranny. But it's also true that we fought (and fight) for economic interests. It&…