Overview

The congregation meets in Bethesda, Md., located outside Washington, D.C. We have a small, growing Sunday School and would consider applicants who are interested in serving as both Rabbi and Education Director, as well as applicants interested solely in the rabbinical position.

Under the general supervision of the Beth Chai Board of Directors, the Rabbi’s responsibilities include:

1.      Overall: Provide enthusiastic and engaged leadership of the congregation to energize, support and grow the Beth Chai community in a manner that affirms our values.

2.      Ritual: Oversee rituals by leading High Holiday Services, monthly Havdalah services, Saturday morning Shabbat B’nai Mitzvah services (about 10 per year) and other ritual events as needed. The rabbi will also be encouraged to offer weddings, baby namings and other life cycle events to people in the congregation and the wider community, and may charge for those services separately.

3.      Leadership: Maintain relationships with the Beth Chai board of directors and committees, and consulting as appropriate on goals and activities. Meeting with prospective members and engaging new and existing members. Encouraging inter-Judaic and inter-faith respect and understanding.

4.      B’nai Mitzvah Guidance: Work with Mitzvah students to select a Mitzvah topic and develop a presentation; reviewing families’ service booklets to ensure they align with Beth Chai’s philosophy and traditions.

5.      Pastoral Care: Provide rabbinic counseling, emotional support and spiritual direction as needed.

6.      Adult Education: Participate in and lead 5 or 6 of the Adult Education sessions (during times that do not unreasonably conflict with other responsibilities).

7.      Tikkun Olam: Encourage Tikkun Olam, Tzedakah and a general spirit of social justice.

8.      Sunday School: Provide support and guidance to Education Director and Sunday school

9.      Other: Perform other tasks as may be requested by the Executive Committee and/or Board of Directors.

The following tasks outline the responsibilities of the Education Director:

1.      Provide enthusiastic and engaged leadership of the school to enable all students to have a positive and rewarding educational experience that aligns with and affirms the values and culture of Beth Chai.

2.      Recruit, hire, supervise and evaluate teachers. Link teachers to appropriate resources and support their curriculum development.

3.      Work to assess and improve the curriculum, working with the board and parents.

4.      Plan school-wide programming for holidays including Sukkot, Hanukkah, Purim, and Passover.

5.      Develop and manage the scheduling for the school, coordinating with adult education committee and the Board. Determine appropriate use of space for school activities and student class assignments. Enforce school policies related to classroom behavior and discipline.

6.      Develop and maintain a budget and a set of school policies that is approved by the Board of Directors. Identify, apply for, and administer appropriate grants for development of school-related programming.

7.      Attend monthly board meetings and make regular reports to the Board on school matters.

8.      Provide updates on school schedules and activities in the annual newsletter, weekly email newsletter, and on the Beth Chai website.

9.      Market the school to prospective members by attending meetings for new members and by taking referrals from Board members and advertisements. Answer questions from prospective members and discuss concerns of parents throughout the years.

Work Remotely: no
Qualifications:

Beth Chai, an independent congregation, is seeking a Rabbi with a degree/certification from a rabbinic institution, and will consider rabbis of any denomination who are passionate about leading our congregation in a manner that supports our humanist values and programming.  We will also consider applicants with equivalent qualifications who meet these requirements as well:

Desired Skills and Qualities

·         Outstanding leadership experience and abilities

·         Strong verbal and written communication skills

·         Ability to speak publicly for services, sermons and community outreach events

·         Knowledge of and ability to teach and advise about Jewish history, rituals and tradition to include Torah, literature, culture and spirituality

·         Willingness to explain and lead the practice of Judaism in a non-theistic manner

·         Ability to read and speak Hebrew (preferred)

·         Appreciation of Beth Chai’s diverse, inter-faith community

Position Start Date: The initial term of the rabbi is projected to be 24-36 months, beginning September 1, 2019, with the expectation that the Rabbi, if successful, will remain as the consistent head Rabbi of the congregation for an extended period of time. Prior to the start of the term (during spring and summer), time should be allowed for transition. The position is part-time but the passion for our community should not be thought as “part-time.”
Community Description:

Beth Chai is a lay-run, welcoming community that celebrates Jewish values, history, ethnicity, music and culture. We believe that it is up to humans to create the world we wish to live in, and we work to bring alive the principles of tikkun olam. Our approach to Judaism is non-theistic, and we are a big tent that fully includes interfaith families and members with a wide-range of Jewish backgrounds.
We celebrate all major Jewish holidays, run vibrant adult education and social action programs, and offer Sunday School from pre-K through 8th grade. Our B’nai Mitzvah program gives young people and their families the chance to create meaningful ceremonies marking this coming of age moment.
We draw members from all over the Washington, D.C., area. In 2018, we are celebrating 40 years as a congregation.

Send resumes and cover letter to:

Interested applicants should email the following documents to rabbisearch@bethchai.org with “Rabbi Application” in the subject line. Application deadline is Monday, November 19, 2018.
• A cover letter explaining your interest in this position and highlighting relevant experience. As part of the cover letter, please indicate one of the following:
o Only interested in Rabbi position without Education Director responsibilities
o Only interested in the Rabbi position if it includes the Education responsibilities
o Interested in the Rabbi position, whether or not the Education Director responsibilities are included.
• A statement outlining your vision for leading a congregation like ours. In writing this statement, please first read our congregation’s Vision Document, sent upon request; and read through our website (www.bethchai.org).
• A recent, relevant writing sample in English such as a sermon or an article for a community newsletter.
• A resume or CV

About Beth Chai Humanist Congregation of Greater Washington

Beth Chai, an independent congregation, is a lay-run, welcoming community that celebrates Jewish values, history, ethnicity, music and culture. We believe that it is up to humans to create the world we wish to live in, and we work to bring alive the principles of tikkun olam. Our approach to Judaism is non-theistic, and we are a big tent that fully includes interfaith families and members with a wide-range of Jewish backgrounds.

We celebrate all major Jewish holidays, run vibrant adult education and social action programs, and offer Sunday School from pre-K through 8th grade. Our B’nai Mitzvah program gives young people and their families the chance to create meaningful ceremonies marking this coming of age moment.

We draw members from all over the Washington, D.C., area. In 2018, we are celebrating 40 years as a congregation.