Priority measures to strengthen the quality of Jewish life in North America, and the continuing Middle East crisis will highlight major deliberations and actions undertaken by more than 2500 Jewish communal leaders from the U.S. and Canada at the 43rd General Assembly of the Council of Jewish. Federations and Welfare Funds in Chicago Nov. 13-17, it was announced by Raymond Epstein, CJF president.
Speakers at the five-day conclave will include outstanding Jewish leaders and spokesmen from both this country and Israel, according to Epstein, who will deliver the keynote address Nov. 14.
Prominent among those from overseas are: Major Gen. Aharon Yariv, Israel’s Minister of Information, who will give a first-hand report on the major developments in the Middle East; Pin-has Sapir, chairman of the Jewish Agency in Jerusalem, responsible for the immigration and absorption of Israel’s newcomers, who will outline the massive human needs for 1975. a survey dramatically reinforced by the participation at the Assembly of Silva Zalmanson, renowned Soviet Jewish activist. just arrived in this country from her new home in Israel; and Dr. David Weiss of Hebrew University, with an overview of the viability of Jewish tradition and values.
An unprecedented event, reflecting the current urgencies, will occur on the eve of the General Assembly, when the United Jewish Appeal will hold the national special Big Gifts dinner, Nov. 13, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Chicago. Chaired by Paul Zuckerman, UJA general chairman, this prestigious UJA event is being held a month sooner than in other years–a measure of extraordinary and coordinated fund-raising efforts.
PIVOTAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR DESTINY OF JEWS
Geared to the Assembly’s theme, “Crisis and Response: The New Chapter,” more than 90 sessions–workshops, forums and plenaries–will concern themselves with an intensive assessment of the critical issues and needs confronting Jewish community Federations.
“We meet in a world radically changed,” Epstein noted, “from our Assembly meeting last year in New Orleans. In today’s tense situation our North American Jewish community, the largest in numbers and resources in all history, carries the pivotal responsibilities for our own well being and for the destiny of the Jews of the world.” The Assembly agenda, he added, “reflects the most comprehensive responsibilities our Federations have ever had.”
Four forums will be devoted to major aspects of these concerns: “Community Relations Issues in American Policy on the Middle East”; “Federation-Synagogue Relations–Emerging Guideline for Local Communities”: “Federations Revisited: An Updated View of the Philosophy of Federations and the Impact of Evolving Changes” ;and “Dialogue with General Assembly Scholars-in-Residence.”
There will also be sessions dealing with current projects and plans for the Institute of Jewish Life, Jewish family life, community action on Soviet Jewry, Federation-government relations, techniques for reaching high school and college youth, the role and resources of the American Jewish press, and “The World Jewish Community –A New Diaspora Perspective.”
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