The JCP Rabbi serves as the chief religious officer, primary spiritual resource, and Jewish leader for a diverse and growing community. The Rabbi is charged with infusing positive Jewish content and practice throughout to increase community belonging and Jewish engagement. S/he serves as Rabbi for the organization and for our families, and as the primary voice of Jewish values, religious tradition and innovation, and spirituality throughout JCP experiences, educational curriculum, and outreach.
Reporting to and supported by the JCP Executive Director, the rabbi partners with staff and volunteers to fulfill this role through traditional and nontraditional programming for the downtown community. Key partners include JCP’s senior team, including the director of the early childhood center (ECC) and the director of community learning and engagement (CLE), as well as lay leaders and other volunteers.
Primary responsibilities include:
- Identify and develop opportunities for joyful Jewish practice and programming for the JCP community, and for fostering and deepening Jewish engagement throughout the local neighborhoods.
- Build on and expand the content within JCP’ s palette of Holiday and Shabbat programs, services and celebrations/observances, working with volunteers and internal staff.
- Write and deliver sermons that connect with the community, leading us to new understanding and/or action. Author brief articles, social media posts and other communications to engage the current community and reach out to others.
- Build out High Holiday services and experiences with engaging and relevant content. Actively foster leadership participation within and beyond the JCP community.
- Oversee music program: identify, audition, supervise, and rehearse musicians for services and activities. Actively promote singing and other forms of music in services. Work with volunteers to ensure that the music program is engaging and inclusive. Collaborate with Directors of ECC and CLE to support music in the ECC and the Hebrew School and other engagement programs.
- Work with families to create personally meaningful life-cycle events, including baby namings, bnai mitzvah, weddings, funerals, shiva, etc. and seek opportunities to increase the spiritual and educational elements of these events.
- Collaborate to evolve and strengthen, in coordination with the Hebrew School, JCP’s creative and meaningful Bnai Mitzvah program, and facilitate celebrations at local synagogues and other venues. Create and refine a sustainable model to support a growing community in collaboration with the Director of CLE.
- Develop and implement opportunities for adult learning in conjunction with the Director of CLE.
- Serve as a member of the senior JCP leadership team supporting activities throughout the organization working on JCP-wide priorities.
- Provide pastoral care to the JCP community on an as-needed basis. Reach out to those experiencing illness or loss.
- Serve as consultant and content expert for ECC, HSP and other programs, assisting in curriculum development and other programming as needed. Educate and actively engage children throughout JCP’s offerings.
- Partner with the Director of CLE to provide Jewish content as needed to support establishment and growth of cohesive, engaged sub-communities of children/youth.
- Continue to build out service programs for youth and adults working in collaboration with Director of CLE.
- Represent JCP in professional opportunities as a spokesperson or representative as appropriate.
- Manage finances for services and other applicable programs.
- Cultivate volunteers within the community for involvement in, and leadership of, JCP’s Jewish programming as appropriate. Oversee volunteer committees as needed.
- Work closely with JCP marketing staff to maximize awareness of all programs, and to increase community engagement and religious and participation over time.
- Assist with financial, fundraising and other efforts on behalf of JCP as requested.
JCP is independent and unaffiliated; rabbis from any denominational background and ordination are welcome to apply.
· Ordination from a recognized seminary or rabbinic training program
· Experience in an urban congregation; experience with several different congregations a plus
· Ability to work with a diverse community, including people of varying ages, Jewish backgrounds, etc. as well as multi-faith and LGBTQ families
· Great at building and sustaining relationships with children, young people, families and adults
· Excellent teacher and lesson/curriculum designer, makes Jewish learning engaging, accessible and relevant
· Promotes a creative and flexible approach to religion, is not traditionally traditional
· Entrepreneurial – constantly seeks opportunities to create and implement new programs and to inject new elements into existing ones
· Able to craft meaningful and individualized lifecycle events while engaging individuals and families in their creation
· Committed to bringing Judaism to those with limited Jewish backgrounds, helps others to see Judaism as a source of joy and meaning which enriches our lives and improves our world
· Has a strong musical sense; playing an instrument or a good singing voice a big plus
· Able to work on own and as part of a team, concerned with the interests of the whole
· Excellent interpersonal, written and oral communication skills
· Legal documentation to work in the US
DESIRABLE: Familiarity with the New York City Jewish communal landscape
Full benefits package including pension, generous vacation allowance, flexible schedule, budget for education and discretionary use
Resumes should be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org with "Rabbi Search" in the subject line.
The applicant may also include a cover letter and/or personal statement, articles or other pieces s/he has written, links to video/audio recordings of him/her singing, teaching, delivering a sermon, etc.
About JCP Downtown
Jewish Community Project Downtown (JCP) is an innovative nonprofit organization serving the emerging needs of one of New York’s most exciting and growing Jewish communities. Emerging from the dark days following the tragic events of September 11, 2001, JCP began as a communal response to the need for community and connection. After a two year incubation period, JCP was formally founded as a 501(c)3 and launched its first major offering, an early childhood center, in the Fall of 2005. As word spread and families began to sign on in ever-greater numbers, JCP began to expand with the hiring of professional staff, the launch of holiday and worship programming, the addition of a Hebrew school, multiple youth programs, parenting programs and outreach to the larger community of lower Manhattan.
Today, JCP has an annual operating budget of more than $5M, and a staff of sixty full-time and part-time professionals. With sustained outreach to 3,000+ households; 700+ families have some regular contact with JCP from Tribeca but also from Chelsea, Soho, the West and East Village, Battery Park City and nearby Brooklyn.
During these more than ten years of rapid growth, the program has had several homes and is now located at 146 Duane Street for the early childhood center, which now serves 110 children per year, and the educational programs for elementary, middle and high school students, with an additional 170-200 children. Parents, administrators, volunteers and a diverse and representative board of directors continue to collaborate and foster a special and compelling environment for learning and support.