Parashat Shoftim (Deuteronomy 16:18-21:9)

“When you approach a town to attack it, you shall offer it terms of peace.” (Deut. 20:10) JCC leaders consistently identify hachnasat orchim, or hospitality (literally: bringing in guests) as a signature value of the JCC Movement. The Biblical precedent is Abraham’s response to the three strangers: he greets them, feeds them, and escorts them […]

That Feel


It’s Elul, the month when repentance begins in the Jewish world. Shofars blow, regrets and aspirations mount. It’s a time for reflection and renewal. Some of us find ourselves in synagogues during the High Holy Days. For some, the Days of Awe are the only season when we take a seat in a synagogue or […]

Inclusion in Every Sense


NJY Camps demonstrate what JCC Camps do best Marla Cohen There is really nothing quite like hearing hundreds of children in identical blue shirts singing “Hatikvah.” But when I listened to them at NJY’s Camp Nesher, a Modern Orthodox camp in Pennsylvania that is part of the JCC Movement, the moment was more throat-catching than […]

Meet Stephen


I have already met quite of few of you as I have begun to get acquainted with the vast network of programs JCC Association supports: JCCs, YM-YWHAs, camps, and JWB Jewish Chaplains Council, which provides for the spiritual and cultural needs of Jewish military personnel, their families, and veterans. Representing 350 sites in North America, […]

A Tale Of Two Cities


Jerusalem and Tel Aviv are not Charles Dickens’ London and Paris but in a similar way, these two cities capture in their characteristics Israel’s variety, diversity, heterogeneousness and color. And they are less than 40 miles apart. In Jerusalem we dig to discover our roots and past; in Tel Aviv we dig to welcome the […]

Better Safe Than Sorry


Creating a culture of safety at JCCs Michael Feinstein began as chief operating officer at the JCC of Greater Washington in April of 2006. It was his first time working at a JCC. He was still transitioning into his new position when less than three months later, the worst thing he could imagine happened. A […]

Parashat R’eih (Deuteronomy 11:26-16:12)

“Together with your households, you shall feast there before the Lord your god, happy in all the undertakings in which the Lord your God has blessed you.” (Deut. 12:7) Parashat R’eih ends with a reminder to observe Pesach, Shavuot, and Sukkot, the three pilgrimage festivals and commands, “You shall rejoice before the Lord your God […]

Parashat Eikev (Deuteronomy 7:12-11:25)

“For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land, a land with streams and springs and fountains issuing from plain and hill.” (Deuteronomy 8:7) Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel (1907–1972; one of the leading Jewish philosophers and theologians of the 20th century) is famous for his statement following the 1965 civil rights march […]

The JCC Maccabi Games: We Are The Champions


If you work in or belong to a JCC, there is a good chance that the JCC Maccabi Games and ArtsFest have touched your life in a transformative way. Maybe you participated as an athlete, hosted a young person in your home, coached, organized, donated, or otherwise held up a pole supporting the big, open […]

Sheva-Covenant Directors Institute addresses a gap in leadership as educators learn together


July marked the initial gathering of the first cohort of the Sheva-Covenant Directors Institute. Sponsored by the Covenant Foundation in partnership with the JCC Association, this fellowship serves to connect emerging learners and leaders in Jewish Early Childhood Education, and provides a platform for study, discussion, and relationship building. It will also fill a need […]

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