[As of 12/13, please check here for link updates.]
Over the past few years, we have seen an important new phenomenon in Jewish life: the creation of dozens of independent minyanim, spiritual communities, alternative worship services, and emergent congregations. This rich array adds diverse opportunities for worship, learning, social justice work, community-building and spiritual expression.
We knew very little about the thousands of people associated with these new endeavors. Who are they? What are their concerns? How do they feel about the communities they’re creating, joining, and building? Why do they participate?
To answer these questions, the S3K Synagogue Studies Institute, in collaboration with Mechon Hadar, conducted a survey designed by the prominent sociologist Steven M. Cohen in partnership with Rabbi Elie Kaunfer and Shawn Landres. Our goal was to find out more about the participants, members, partners, and “acquaintances” of these new spiritual communities. The results of this work is the first ever portrait of the interests, values, and concerns of a critical innovative turn in American Judaism.
Please go here to download the report and related files.
To take part in Mechon Hadar’s hosted discussion of the report and/or to suggest issues and questions for further analysis, please go here.
For links to coverage of the survey results, as well as additional blogposts related to both the results and the November 28 New York Times story by Neela Banerjee, please click here.