This is less of a blog post and more of an open ended question. I am looking for responses from the world out there!
In today’s world, where decisions are made by boards, executive directors handle the day-to-day operation and infrastructure of our houses of worship, Unions, Agudas and the like decide policy, Rabbi Eidlitz handles Kashrus questions, mashgichim supervise our restaurants, youth directors handle our kids, gabbais delegate prayer jobs, meshulachim come straight to our door to collect charity, kollel members teach Torah classes, therapists counsel us, and the general population of Orthodox Jews is becoming more and more learned, able to learn and look up Halachic Shailas (Questions of Jewish Law) on their own and if not, most will call their “Rebbe from Yeshiva” for a more serious Shaila, what is the role of the Congregational Rabbi?
I would like to make it clear, I am not opposed to congregational Rabbis, in fact I love them… The congregational Rabbi of my home town, who was there for me as I became a Jewish adult, was amazing (so amazing that he is now Executive Vice President of the OU) and I also currently live in a small town (Jewishly), where the Rabbis do a helluvalot. But looking at the trend of American Jewish Communities (particularly Orthodox), the question constantly comes to mind: What is the role of a congregational Rabbi in today’s/tomorrow’s world?
I would love to hear from the people out there, community members, lay-leaders, congregational Rabbis (particularly, congregational Rabbis), kids, teens, parents, grandparents and everyone in between. Either post your response in the comments section, or write a post on your own blog and post a link below. Conversation is a healthy thing.
UPDATE: I wanted clarify my intention with this post. I feel that congregational Rabbis have a purpose in today’s world, I wanted/want to make the Jewish world think about what each of us feel that role is and about the importance of that role. So please, don’t take this post as an attack on the institution of congregational Rabbis, rather let it get you thinking about what you appreciate about congregational Rabbis and take it as a conversation starter about the state of Judaism in America today and the direction it is going.