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November 07, 1986 - Image 29

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1986-11-07

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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American Jews
are an ethnic
community whose
authenticity is
wearing thin.

MIT'S 111
fl MIME?
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tion is "searching for a way
+0 bridge the 'loneliness
.p.' " One program has
small groups meeting in
members' homes for study
sessions taught by learned
members.
Pinsker said members also
ye begun to "Swap" Friday
t and holiday dinners to
line new people and to
duce the congregation
;self." He discovered that
Jews are not comfortable
with "the purely social. They
want their search for other
people to be spiritualized.
They want meaning at-
tached."
The desire for continued
Jewish learning has even
reached Wall Street, where a
growing number of Jewish
professionals and
businessmen spend the noon
hour studying a page of Tal-
mud. Mason adds that profes-
sionals in other cities attend
similar groups.
Brickner regards American
Jews not as a worshipping
community, but rather an
ethnic community "whose au-
thenticity is wearing thin."
But those Jews who care "are
demanding and finding ways
to participate" in services, he
said.
To eliminate barriers be-
tween the rabbi and the con-
gregants, Brickner has had
the sanctuary reshaped and
has introduced dancing and
rhythmic clapping into the
services.
Mason explains that the
desire for greater participa-
tion, more study and "a closer
community" appears to be a
reaction to "the alienation
and fragmentation of modern
life."
In an effort to find exactly
what they want, Mason
writes, some urban Jews
have started "synagogue
shopping." Pinsker found
such Jews circulating
through his synagogue fairly
frequently.

,

Copyright 1986, Jewish Tele-
graphic Agency

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"mecca" for observant single
Jews on Manhattan's Upper
West Side. A social worker
who is a member has moved
the emphasis on singles an-
other step forward by start-
ing an informal match-
making
service for young

, singles coming to the
synagogue.
The rabbi of the West End
Synagogue in Manhatten,
Lawrence Pinsker, said his
Reconstructionist congrega-

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31

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