I have learned that every congregation has at least one person who feels in their kishkes – in their guts – that their congregation should be taking environmental issues seriously, but who may feel alone in rousing their rabbi or other community members.
If someone approaches you and pushes you to consider a new program or a change in practice, first honor the fact that his or her concern is not peripheral to your mission as a Jewish organization. Green efforts are not just of interest to the extent they save money, or engage “young professionals,” or serve some other purpose. Striving to honor the Torah of nature as fully as we honor the Torah of parchment isn’t a side project for people who are serious about Judaism. It is Judaism. When a Jewish community examines its impact on the natural world, it is doing something that is as core to its mission as teaching and learning Torah. Read More