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Second Chai Campaign

 Donate to our Second Chai campaign online through our secure ShulCloud account and payment portal.

Congregation Rodfei Zedek has embraced change and responded to evolving communities for almost one hundred and fifty years. Most recently, eighteen years ago, when Congregation Rodfei Zedek required a new synagogue building, we designed a light-filled space—visually uplifting, welcoming, and flexible. We wanted the building to inspire our efforts to fashion a uniquely fresh and yet traditional Conservative Jewish community on the South Side of Chicago. We know now that the building and the congregation succeeded. Our lovely home continues to support us in following the customs we inherit and our spirit of innovation and change.

Today, CRZ has exceeded the expectations that guided our efforts for nearly two decades:
•    Our congregant numbers are growing.
•    We grow younger as a group yet remain richly multi-generational.
•    We engage superb clergy and staff.
•    We welcome numerous formats for worship.
•    We develop volunteer leaders and lay participation.
•    We nurture renowned youth and adult educational programs.
•    We are fully egalitarian.
•    We foster vibrant and varied communities.
CRZ now presents a rich and meaningful set of choices for congregants, families, friends, and the larger community to worship, learn, celebrate, advocate, and volunteer, with insightful guidance from our spiritual leaders Rabbi David Minkus and Cantor Rachael Rosenberg.

Rabbi Minkus recently acknowledged the CRZ members and friends who molded the congregation we know today. He said: “Thank you to those who made this building into a community and a sacred home—to those who value change and stand steadfast to our tradition.”

In summer 2019, we launched an $800,000 fundraising campaign over three years intending to carry forward our vision and sustain our momentum for the next 18 years. We call it The Second Chai Campaign for Congregation Rodfei Zedek. By means of this campaign we will keep up the pace of development that characterized our first 18 years in the building.

Recognizing that we run CRZ on a lean budget and an extraordinary level of volunteer effort, The Second Chai Campaign focuses on four broad aspects of our operations that require new financial infusions in order for us to stay out in front of the status quo. The funds we raise will support activity in four arenas:

•    Facilities, systems, and equipment. After 18 years, we need to renovate, repair, and re-think parts of our facility, and we must continue to respond wisely to safety and security concerns.

•    Clergy and staff. Our fine professionals require financial resources to support the dedication and creativity they provide every day.

•    Growth.  Similarly, our capable clergy need support in outreach, marketing, and programming so that we reach a critical mass of members for internal strength and stability.

•    Financial stability. We must anticipate and prepare for possible fluctuations in earned income from our building partners (the JEC, Akiba Schechter, the JCC, and others).

The $2 million we raised two decades ago helped construct our current synagogue building. Today, the CRZ community needs funds, over and beyond our annual contributions, to fortify our assets and continue forging new ground as a congregation. We invite you to participate generously and we look forwarding to talking with you about gifts that meet your interests and capacity.

The presence, participation, and support of every person is crucial to our continued progress and strength.

Tue, April 20 2021 8 Iyyar 5781