February 3, 2005 by yochanan
Baruch atah, Adonai, haEl hakadosh.
and to all eternity proclaim Your holiness.
Your praise, O G-d, shall never depart from our lips.
Blessed is Adonai, the Holy G-d.
I just returned from the annual Hashivenu Forum that was held this last weekend. Hashivenu Forum is an annual gathering of Messianic Jewish scholars and leaders that meet annually to discuss issues of building a mature Messianic Judaism.
In the final session there was mentioned the phrase “L’dor vador” which is a part of the third blessing of the Amidah. These words commonly translated in English as “from generation to generation” make for a brief yet powerful call to build a Jewish future and for our case a call for the building of a mature Messianic Judaism for the future. In this context there was an opening for the group of people in their 20′s to speak out about making Messianic Judaism and Jewish prayer relevant to the next generation as a way to live out l’dor vador.
I based on being tired from 3 full days of events did not add my comment, for which I am regretful, especially being that I would be sharing the below words directly with many of the leaders of the Messianic Jewish world, but for those who visit the blog they will get the remarks that I unfortunately did not verbalize.
Below is a “transcript” of my unspoken comment:
As we think of l’dor vador and making a Messianic Judaism for the future, I would like to say that yes I fully support the ideas expressed in making Messianic Judaism more accessible to the youth and 20-somethings and I have done what I can among my peers to develop creative liturgical services that are engaging and relevant to those unfamiliar with Hebrew by using transliteration and English readings. But I think that before we talk of programs and new liturgies we must first deal with the most important way to get to l’dor vador and that is fostering and recruiting the next generation of leaders.
As I look over this crowd I see many of the founding members of the modern Messianic Jewish movement and those who began thinking “Messianic Jewishly” long before many of those younger people here were born. For your work in the past, your work now and the future things that you will do for G-d and the establishing of a mature Messianic Judaism we are truly grateful. Along with being grateful we know that for our movement to move into the 21st century that we will have to take up the work that you have begun and fulfill the vision now and create new visions for the future. So then we need your help. I feel confident that at least among those of us here in our 20′s and 30′s we realize that we have a role to play and I ask you to help us.
Today we all received a flier about the upcoming Young Messianic Jewish Scholars Conference that will be held later this year. This is one of the most important steps so far to build the future of Messianic Judaism.
For those of you who are leaders I want to encourage you to see this not as just an announcement of an event but as your opportunity and even your responsibility to both find future leaders in your community to attend and help them to get to this event. There is no better way to see a Messianic Judaism for the future but to build leaders now and this conference is a great step toward building future leaders and crafting a vision for our future.
For those of us in their 20′s and 30′s here this is more than an announcement or even an invitation but look at it as a previously scheduled appointment for you and you are just now been given the dates. I was going to say look at it as a military induction notice but that sounded a bit too militaristic, though the fight for the future of Messianic Judaism is a “just war”.
So then as I conclude let’s do our parts to see as many future leaders at the Young Messianic Jewish Scholars Conference as possible this year. The time is now for us younger people to take up the mantle and we need you leaders to help us in this great endeavor.
May we daily live out the spirit of l’dor vador and do what is needed to build a mature Messianic Judaism for the future.