After months of discussions about whether to continue its policy of closing in observance of Shabbat, the Kaplen JCC on the Palisades’ board of directors overwhelmingly voted to maintain its current practice, reinforcing its mission and affirming the message it sends to the community about the importance of Shabbat.
“Deeply rooted in Jewish values and tradition, the vision for the JCC is to be the center point of Jewish life in our community and to engage all generations in our mission and values,” its CEO, Jordan Shenker, said. “In this context, how we observe Shabbat becomes an important issue and it’s one that has been debated on and off for years. We ultimately arrived at our current decision to remain closed because we exist as a JCC to build community and promote Jewish engagement and believe that closing for Shabbat exemplifies our deep dedication to Jewish tradition and values.”
“Our board prides itself on always being open to discussions on how the JCC can best achieve its mission and serve our community,” the JCC’s president, JoJo Rubach, added. “This kind of open forum leads to insightful dialogues where board members are encouraged to express and dispute a variety of views. I am proud of this process and our ability to debate important topics like this one in such a supportive and respectful manner, and arriving at this decision speaks to our shared understanding of our values and mission.”
The JCC “celebrates and acknowledges the diversity that exists within its community, and believes that it provides a multitude of opportunities to achieve this from Sunday through Friday,” according to its press release.