Thursday, 13 December 2012

The Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue

Some more on The United Synagogue as last posted

The Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue

 (RCUS) is the professional association of the United Synagogue Rabbinate. Its key objective is to support and promote the wellbeing and success of Rabbis and their families within their local Communities and across the US as a whole.

As well as representing the interests of Rabbis in conversations with the US Trustees and leading Head Office professional staff, we have also sought to support the personal and professional development of Rabbis and their families through a range of activities. These include high quality professional in-service training programmes, an annual 2 - 3 day residential Conference, social events and training visits to the USA and Israel.

The RCUS has an elected organising committee which meets regularly (every five or six weeks) and consists of an Executive and Committee, totalling 11 Rabbis in number, plus a part-time, Executive Director, Rabbi Dr Julian Shindler. Our Rabbinate is committed to the core values of the US's mission and our Executive meets with the US Chief Executive on a regular basis.

RCUS Rabbis now attend and input to the vast majority of US working groups, including those of the Community Development Group (CDG). The RCUS is thus open and accessible, not only to every US Rabbi, but also to the lay leadership of our Communities.

A particularly welcome development over the course of the last year or two has been the CDG Rabbinic/lay liaison group which serves as a vital link between the regional forum meetings and the US Rabbinate. This group also enables effective two-way communication on issues of concern between US Rabbis and grass-roots lay leadership.

As the United Synagogue moves forward with a determined focus on becoming an ever more relevant and dynamic force in the life of the mainstream Anglo-Jewish Community, the RCUS is equally applying itself to the question of how Rabbis can best and most appropriately engage with new emerging opportunities.

Work is currently in progress to realise the long held dream of creating a US Rabbinic Resource Centre and an enhanced professional Rabbinic support facility. Recently renamed with the Hebrew word for 'crown' or 'lustre, P'EIR, (also, usefully, an English acronym for Promoting Excellence In Rabbis!), we hope and anticipate that this facility will ensure career-long dynamism, sensitivity, integrity, compassion, effectiveness and professionalism among US Rabbis. 

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