Monday, June 18, 2012

"Sweeping Changes To N.Y. Jewry Seen In First-In-Decade Survey" Jewish Week

 My comments: In the second article, it stated "It comes down to fostering and strengthening a positive Jewish character in what some are calling a “leaner and meaner” American Jewish society where fewer people affiliate, but those who do are more intensely involved. 
  1. Orthodox Jews= 1/3 of the community and 64 percent of its children
  2. Older, poorer, more Orthodox and more balkanized.
  3. Orthodox births fuel population jump as number of poor rise; Reform, Conservative decrease. Can center hold?
  4. 37% of Jews define themselves as nondenominational or “Just Jewish,” a figure that has doubled since 1990.
  5. The Conservative and Reform movements each lost about 40,000 members over the decade
  6. 20% of all people in Jewish households are poor today — with incomes under 150 percent of the federal poverty guidelines — compared to 15 percent in 2002. 
  7. Hardest hit are Russian-speaking seniors who live alone (77 percent are poor) and chasidic Jews (45 percent of chasidic households are poor).
  8. The Modern Orthodox= 4 times, Haredim (Ultra- Religious)=12 times the number of children as non-Orthodox homes.
  9. 26 percent of Jewish households earning $250,000 or more make philanthropic donations, but not to Jewish causes
  10. “Very high correlation in many studies, including this one, between the level of adult Jewish engagement and the kinds of Jewish education people had when they were young. Those who had a day school education, an Israel experience or attended a Jewish summer camp are much more likely to be Jewishly engaged than those who just had a supplementary school education.
  11.  More Jews live in the eight-county New York area than in the combined metropolitan areas of Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, Washington, D.C. and San Francisco.
  12. The increase in Orthodox households “offset the rising rate of intermarriage in the non-Orthodox population.
  13. Intermarriage rate=22 percent, the same as in 2002, but 40 percent overall among the non-Orthodox, and a new high of 50 percent among non-Orthodox couples married in the last five years.
  14. Over the last several decades the Modern Orthodox have moved to the right, in part a result of young people coming back from a year or two of post-high school yeshiva study in Israel and taking on more stringent levels of observance than their parents.
Precisely the issue confronting American Jewry. The ultra stringency and lack of compromise is ostracizing many, while strengthening others! I wonder if God would rather a unified Jewish population that work to include all Jewry or would rather strife and animosity among his people? 
For example, not eating by a family members home, because they do not dip their dishes on the Mikveh. Or disinviting a family member for Shabbat or a holiday, because they might drive. I believe they miss the point. These interactions could be the only ones some have with Judaism and they are being put out to dry. They are not included, because they are not as observant. 
When did we get the right to judge everyone around us? Is the world not in enough turmoil with most religions thinking they are the only ones correct. This breeds hatred and murder in the name of God! 
Article #1Sweeping Changes To N.Y. Jewry Seen In First-In-Decade Survey
Article #2- "A Community Pulling Apart" by Gary Rosenblatt of The Jewish Week (UJA-Federation faces steep challenge in light of new data)
Important Information from the UJA-Federation of New York survey (2011)

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