Conference to explore changing environment for congregations

Conference to explore changing environment for congregations

Four national Jewish organizations will sponsor a conference in Pittsburgh to provide support for small synagogues struggling to survive in a changing communal environment.

The conference, called “Congregations in a Changing Environment,” is slated for Sunday, Aug. 26, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Jewish Community Center in Squirrel Hill. It is for congregations with fewer than 75 member units or individuals who now reside in Pittsburgh and are former members of small congregations.

The program will bring together leadership and members of congregations in western Pennsylvania, southwestern New York, western Maryland, West Virginia and eastern Ohio.

The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, Union for Reform Judaism, Jewish Federations of North America and the Jewish Community Legacy Project are the agency sponsors. The Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh will host the event.

Among the issues to be discussed are preserving cemeteries, securing clergy, sustaining membership, enhancing programs, maintaining synagogue buildings and establishing legacies.

Registration begins at 10:30 a.m. at the JCC, 5738 Forbes Ave. There is a charge, which includes a kosher lunch.

Representatives of congregations with fewer than 75 households are asked to preregister by emailing or calling Noah Levine, senior vice president, Jewish Community Legacy Project, at 678-429-8895 by Aug. 22.