Rethinking Synagogues: A New Vocabulary for Congregational Life
A critical and challenging look at reinventing the synagogue, as the centerpiece of a refashioned Jewish community.
"America is undergoing a spiritual revolution: only the fourth religious awakening in its history. I plead, therefore, for an equally spiritual synagogue, knowing that any North American Jewish community that hopes to be around in a hundred years must have religion at its center, with the synagogue, the religious institution that best fits North American culture, at its very core."
—from Chapter 1
Synagogues are under attack, and for good reasons. But they remain the religious backbone of Jewish continuity, especially in America, the sole Western industrial or post-industrial nation where religion and spirituality continue to grow in importance. To fulfill their mandate for the American future, synagogues need to replace old and tired conversation with a new way of talking about their goals, their challenges and their vision for the future.
In this provocative clarion call for synagogue transformation, Rabbi Lawrence A. Hoffman summarizes a decade of research with Synagogue 2/3000—a pioneering experiment that reconceptualized synagogue life—providing fresh ways for synagogues to think as they undertake the exciting task of global change.