The Center for Radically Inclusive Judaism will be the central address for professional and lay Jewish communal leaders who seek to advocate for radically inclusive Judaism with respect to interfaith families. The Center at the outset will have two primary activities, both spurred by publication and distribution of Radical Inclusion: Engaging Interfaith Families for a Thriving Jewish Future, a book by Edmund Case to be published by the Center in January 2019:
- to engage in advocacy writing and speaking at Jewish organizations and conferences in favor of radically inclusive attitudes and practices and programs designed to engage interfaith families Jewishly
- to build an alliance of progressive Jewish leaders that will refine the principles and practices of radically inclusive Judaism and participate in designing and implementing the Center’s future advocacy efforts.
The Center’s possible future advocacy efforts include:
- ongoing writing (on the Center’s website and placements in other publications) and speaking at Jewish organizations (seminaries, rabbinic associations, synagogues, federations, JCCs, Hillels and others) and conferences
- convening allies and interested parties at conferences hosted by the Center
- participating in leadership development and trainings provided by other organizations
- consulting to organizations
- developing and curating resources to help individuals and organizations become radically inclusive, potentially leading to a Handbook for Radically Inclusive Judaism.
The Center will seek to partner initially with other organizations as well as with groups of Reform, Reconstructionist, Renewal, Humanistic and Conservative rabbis. The Center will also seek to partner when appropriate with organizations working for inclusivity with respect to LGBTQ Jews, Jews of color, and Jews with disabilities.
The Center’s mission is to advocate for radically inclusive attitudes and policies toward interfaith families – and for programmatic efforts designed to engage interfaith families in Jewish life and community. The Center’s vision is that interfaith couples and their children engage in a Judaism of meaning that is radically inclusive of them.
The Center for Radically Inclusive Judaism was incorporated in July 2018 by Edmund Case, who retired from InterfaithFamily (IFF) in 2016 after founding it as an independent non-profit in 2001. During that time IFF, now the premier resource supporting interfaith couples exploring Jewish life and inclusive Jewish communities, grew to a budget of over $3 million and a staff of over twenty-five including rabbis posted in seven cities across the US. After leaving IFF, Case consulted to IFF, continued to write about interfaith engagement issues at www.edmundcase.com, and wrote a book, Radical Inclusion: Engaging Interfaith Families in a Thriving Jewish Future, to be published by the Center in January 2019.
The founding members of the Board of Directors of the Center, in addition to Case, are Gary Furst, a businessman and private equity investor, and Rabbi Mayer Selekman, a pioneer in efforts to engage interfaith families. An early Center priority will be to establish an Advisory Board chaired by Rabbi Selekman.