Since our founding in 1825, B’nai Jeshurun has been at the forefront of the American Jewish experience. As we embrace the 21st century and approach our bicentennial, our vision is focused on the spiritual work of transformation and on creating a Jewish spiritual path that is authentic and profound, helping every member to seek and live their individual purpose to the fullest. As a community, BJ also strives to share our learning and passion with local communities and the Jewish world at large.
Now in the fifth year of a seven-year strategic plan, our work is grounded around four pillars: Strengthening Community Connections and Building a Shared Sense of Belonging; Prayer, Music, and Spiritual Practice; Responding to the Prophetic Vision through Social Justice and Hesed; and Engaging and Supporting 21st Century Jewish Families in their full diversity.
Our spiritual leaders and our approximately 1,800 member households share a vision of a diverse, dynamic, and welcoming community that offers many paths to Jewish religious life, with members who support one another in their spiritual quests. We are committed to honoring tradition, while reimagining and innovating our practices to create a vibrant Jewish life for today’s world.
We now seek an Assistant Rabbi who will share in the full range of rabbinic responsibilities for the entire BJ community, with a particular focus on, and passion for, engaging, teaching, and serving our families with children from birth through college.
We are looking for candidates who will bring to our rabbinic team the perspective and energy of a new generation, and who are eager to learn from experienced rabbis who have built one of America’s most innovative and vibrant synagogues. The successful candidate will appreciate and embrace the uniqueness that is at the core of the BJ ethos. Our new Assistant Rabbi will combine the qualities of spiritual leader, prayer leader, pastor, and educator; will be dynamic and engaging; and will visibly strive to lead an exemplary life of Torah, spirituality, hesed, and prayer. BJ welcomes candidates from all affiliations.
The Assistant Rabbi will join Senior Rabbi Rolando Matalon, Rabbi Felicia Sol, who oversees all programs, Executive Director Colin Weil, who oversees all operations and advancement, and a staff of approximately 50 full-time and 10 part-time employees.
General Rabbinic Duties
Responsibilities will pertain to Family Life and Learning (FLAL) as follows:
- Serve as the spiritual leader and innovator of prayer for the full range of services for our young people and their families
- Teach and engage BJ hebrew school, high school, and day school students and their families
- Enrich BJ’s intensive education experiences for youth and families
- Perform pastoral duties, spiritual counseling, and life cycle events for youth and their families
- Serve as primary spiritual leader for family and youth immersive experiences (retreats and trips)
Responsibilities will pertain to the full complement of general rabbinic duties including:
- Pastoral duties and life cycle events: spiritual counseling, conversions, weddings, bikkur holim, funerals, shivah minyanim, unveilings
- Adult education: occasional classes, webinars, havurot
- Prayer services: morning minyan rotation; Shabbat, holiday, and High Holy Days rotation as determined by the Senior Rabbi; weekly life-cycle emergency on-call rotation
- Additional rabbinic resource and presence for BJ staff
- Motivator in outreach to and integration of new members
Desired Additional Attributes
- Desire and ability to become a recognized presence in the life of the BJ community; available, accessible, and approachable to membership
- Alignment with BJ’s religious practice
- Deep commitment to the BJ community.
- Deep love of prayer
- Commitment to text study
- Teacher’s gift for translating traditional texts into relatable realities in the lives of members in both formal and informal settings
- Engaging bimah presence and homiletic ability
- Lives a life steeped in hesed and tzedek as a role model for young people and adults
- Ability to relate to and energize our children and young families, with maturity to engage effectively and respectfully with older congregants.
- Self starter
- Team player
- Maintains highest standard of personal performance in everything undertaken
- Flexible and calm in the face of changing demands and priorities
- Key character traits include: integrity, honesty, warmth, moral courage, and kindness
Education, Experience, and Skills
The successful candidate is expected to have:
- Rabbinic ordination from an accredited institution
- Newly ordained to five years’ rabbinical experience
- Experience working with young people and families in a Jewish educational setting
- Singing ability that allows for leadership of our spirited prayer services, which are largely sung
- Comfort with spoken Hebrew
- At least one year studying, living, and/or working in Israel
- Additional work or life experience (a plus)
The Assistant Rabbi will be supervised by Rabbi Rolando Matalon and mentored by Rabbis Matalon and Sol. The Assistant Rabbi will be a resource and spiritual leader for the Family Life and Learning department and will report to the Director of Family Life and Learning, Michael Witman, for work in that area. The Assistant Rabbi will serve on the senior staff and will participate in weekly senior staff meetings
After the Assistant Rabbi’s initial two-year term, BJ is open to a longer term commitment.
A competitive salary and benefits package will be offered to the right candidate, including parsonage, health insurance, and retirement contributions.
Equal Opportunity Employment
In recognition of our values, commitment to social justice, and responsibility to our employees, congregants, and the greater civic and national community, BJ is committed to equality of opportunity. To this end, BJ’s policy is to comply with the laws, regulations, and orders that provide for and impose obligations on employers with respect to the management of their equal employment opportunity programs. Accordingly, BJ conducts its business and practices in a manner that fully complies with all federal, state, and local laws governing equal employment opportunity. BJ’s compliance with such laws are intended to eliminate discrimination against employees or applicants for employment on account of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, age, national origin, veteran’s status, disability, or other factors unrelated to a person’s ability to do the job.