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Rabbinical Job Description and Congregational Background

 

Getting to Know Ner Tamid

Founded in 1987, Ner Tamid is an intimate, inclusive, diverse and, above all, welcoming congregation of 150 member households in suburban San Diego. We honor and embrace Conservative practice while creating space for innovative participation in connection to Jewish ritual and traditions. Indeed our mission is to Connect Jews to Torah and to Each Other.

Our synagogue has, for more than 30 years, provided an inviting Jewish home for Jews from many different backgrounds and diverse viewpoints. Unpretentious, we want our members to “come as they are” and to pitch in – and they do. Our members are looking for a congregation where they are truly part of a family. Members, young and old, want to be actively engaged in a stimulating Jewish environment. They find that at Ner Tamid.

 

What we want from our rabbi:

At Ner Tamid, we want a rabbi who:

  • Leads with a vision for our congregation;
  • Makes the time to know us and care about us, individually and as a congregation; 
  • Stays after services to schmooze;
  • Knows every student in our religious school by name;
  • Encourages and welcomes our participation and ideas, and is a magnet in the larger community for young families; and who
  • Celebrates, struggles, studies, and worships right alongside us, as one of us. 

     

A strong Conservative background is important, but that background and training should accompany a sense of creativity that makes our members feel welcome. That warm welcome and acceptance must extend from the rabbi to all members and all potential members of our diverse congregation, including interfaith families and Jews-by-choice, who play such an important role in many aspects of our congregational life.

Warmth and charisma mean a great deal to the families of Ner Tamid, as does the ability to craft engaging, intellectual sermons that offer depth and inspiration. Our congregation highly values sermons that connect Jewish teaching and values to our contemporary lives.

We are not looking for a political partisan, but instead for a teacher and a friend who will help us grow Jewishly and who will help to grow our congregation. Our rabbi must be able to hear and incorporate our ideas and opinions while holding true to his or her halachic observance, and to do this with a sense of humility and a sense of humor.

 

What we offer our members:

We offer many opportunities for our members to engage, to learn, and to connect.

Our religious school serves students in kindergarten through 8th grade, and our b’nei mtizvah students usually learn to daven most of the service in addition to Torah and Haftarah. Starting this January we added a monthly pre-k program for ages 3-5.

We offer a variety of Friday night services, including well-attended monthly family services with a congregational dinner, and periodic “Jam under the stars;” a congregational favorite that incorporates secular and spiritual music from our outstanding congregational musicians. We welcome new ideas for our Friday night worship. Shabbat morning services and Sunday minyan take place weekly, as does our Sunday morning Torah study. Our High Holy Day services are highly participatory and musical.

Our adult education program is informal: we offer classes and activities around Torah and Talmud Study, an introduction to Judaism class, an ongoing Hebrew learning group, and periodic specialty classes.

In addition to our pastoral support, regular services, and educational programs, we offer a number of other popular programs including the Gourmet Group, Shmoozers, Rosh Chodesh, and Mahjong.

 

Our Staff

We consider our dedicated staff part of the Ner Tamid family. In addition to our full-time rabbi, we employ the following part-time staff:

  • Director of Education
  • Office Administrator
  • Bookkeeper
  • Religious school teachers
  • Song leader for Family Shabbat services
  • Cantorial soloist for High Holy Days and other special services   

Primary Areas of Responsibility

The rabbi at Ner Tamid will work closely with the board and our other staff members in support of all aspects of congregational life. Primary responsibilities of the rabbi include:

  • Developing a clear vision for the Congregation’s future, and working with board, staff and membership to implement that vision.
  • Serving as the religious and spiritual leader of the congregation. 
  • Leading Shabbat and holiday services, and officiating at life cycle events.
  • Encouraging member participation from children & teens to empty nesters & seniors.
  • Leading and participating in outreach efforts to potential members, including interfaith families and converts. 
  •  Working cooperatively with our Director of Education to enhance our religious school. 
  • Supporting our b’nei mitzvah students with weekly group meetings for 6th/7th grade and with individual meetings before b’nei mitzvah.
  • Developing and teaching adult education programs.
  • Providing pastoral and spiritual support to the sick, elderly, and congregants in need.
  • Offering advice and counsel to the Board of Directors. 
  • Working cooperatively with and providing daily oversight of NTS staff to ensure smooth functioning of all congregational activities.

 

Why Ner Tamid?

Ner Tamid is a place where a rabbi can put her or his stamp on a congregation, and will have the backing to do so. Here, the rabbi has the freedom to try and the freedom to fail, and then try again. As long as it is in service of building our ties to one another and to our Judaism, a rabbi will find us open and supportive.

Our members truly want to learn and grow; we take Judaism seriously here. A rabbi here is uniquely able to know his or her congregation; to be a part of our lives and to build deep and lasting connections on a personal level with congregants who are looking for that connection. 

Finally, the San Diego region is simply a wonderful place to live. The weather is as good as everyone says it is, and Ner Tamid sits on a hilltop overlooking a beautiful canyon with extraordinary views, and (nonthreatening!) wildlife sightings. Our sanctuary is deeply connected to our natural environment, and there is much to love about the outdoors in San Diego, not to mention the museums and other cultural institutions. The beach is just minutes away, along with spectacular mountain hiking.

Poway, where Ner Tamid is located, is well known for its excellent schools and family-friendly atmosphere. There is an active Jewish community in San Diego, with a number of congregations, large and small, and a rabbinic association, a thriving JCC, a Federation, a Jewish Community Foundation, and many more Jewish institutions and opportunities. 

The next rabbi at Ner Tamid will have a unique opportunity to shape the vision for our future, and will quickly become part of our family. No rabbi could ask for a warmer congregation. It is an unusual and wonderful family; our diversity is a strength that will enrich the experience of any rabbi who joins us. 
  

Mon, February 18 2019 13 Adar I 5779