A Message from Marc

Marc's Message

Marc Baker headshot
CJP's President and CEO, Rabbi Marc Baker, writes and teaches about leadership, community, and civic life, bringing the voice of Jewish tradition to contemporary issues.


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Together We Build: The Origin Story of Jewish Federations

Dear Friends,
I think the idea of a Jewish Federation began thousands of years ago, in this week’s Torah portion.
To explain the concept of a Jewish Federation, I often begin with CJP’s origin story as one of the first federated charities in the United States, established nearly 13…

One Community, One Heart

Dear Friends,
What makes a community worthy of standing at Mount Sinai, hearing the voice of God, and receiving the Torah? That is the question I ask myself nearly every day, especially when I read the story of the revelation at Mount Sinai, the centerpiece of this week’s Torah portion.…

Let My People Go

Dear Friends,
This week we remembered and celebrated Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In a time of profound brokenness, it is not clear whether the moral universe is bending, as Dr. King taught, toward justice. So how do we stay resilient, courageous, and strong enough to play our parts in ben…

Hope and “the Great Mistranslation”

Dear Friends,

“I know this might sound weird, but does any of this give you hope for the future?”

A friend and I were talking about the war in Israel, the uptick in antisemitism here in America, threats to democracy, and other existential challenges when she asked me this powerful ques…

Moving Forward Together

Dear Friends,
This Shabbat, we read the penultimate Torah portion of the Book of Genesis and the dramatic conclusion of the story of Joseph. During Judah’s impassioned speech pleading for his brother Benjamin’s life, he explains that he “pledged himself” to their father and promis…