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Beth Israel Congregation


2015 - 2018 Strategic Plan
Approved by Board of Directors 5/21/2015

Mission / Vission / Values / Goals
I. Outreach and Inclusion
II. Youth Religious School
III. Lifelong Education and Activities
IV. Worship, Shabbat, Holidays
V. Congregational Leadership
VI. Facilities Maintenance and Capital Improvements
VII. Synagogue Operations and Finance

I. Outreach and Inclusion

Align all aspects of Beth Israel with our value of being a welcoming and accessible Jewish congregation.

  1. Consider revisions to policies and practices to more fully integrate non-Jewish spouses and family members into the life of our community and to encourage interfaith families to celebrate life cycle events at the synagogue.
  2. Recognize those who identify as Jews by matrilineal and patrilineal descent and by choice as full Jewish members of our community in all aspects of synagogue life and ritual.
  3. Welcome LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning) individuals and families to celebrate life cycle events in our synagogue such as weddings, brit milah, baby namings, and funerals, and to fully participate in all aspects of synagogue life, Jewish traditions and practices.
  4. Expand Beth Israel's outreach in the Mid-coast region by scheduling a range of synagogue community activities in various regional locations including worship services and programs.
  5. Encourage and enable broader participation of older community members and those with disabilities by meeting needs for assistance with transportation or other support.
    1. Consider variations in the timing and location of community events to accommodate varying needs and abilities.
    2. Reach out to residents of area retirement communities to facilitate participation in Beth Israel functions and also consider periodic programming at their facilities
  6. Create connections with the Bowdoin College community.
    1. Organize Beth Israel groups to attend events at Bowdoin.
    2. Consider co-sponsoring Jewish themed lectures, movies or other programs with Bowdoin Hillel or other groups.
    3. Create opportunities for Beth Israel members to serve as Jewish host families for Bowdoin students.
    4. Consider Bowdoin students and faculty as resources for Beth Israel religious school, teen group and multi-generation education programming.
  7. Create a new Publicity, Outreach and Membership Committee to foster wider participation.
    1. Regularly use various media to inform and invite participation in Beth Israel programming by the broader community, including students attending area schools.
    2. Personally reach and welcome individuals and families with volunteer greeters at services, programs and events
    3. Facilitate a community network for one-to-one support in times of need.
    4. Update and distribute membership materials to make them most inviting and broadly accessible.
    5. Create an informational resource on congregational support for end-of-life care, funerals and Beth Israel cemetery practices.
    6. Coordinate an annual new/prospective member event.
    7. Consider needs and interests of year-round residents and summer visitors in planning and publicizing events.