â€œThe idea here is to strengthen Jewish identity, but you canâ€™t do it in an open way because you run afoul of the law,â€ said Rabbi Eric Yoffie, president of the Union for Reform Judaism and a critic of Hebrew charter schools. â€œSo you end up having rabbis and Jewish educators involved, and in all probability promoting Jewish commitment is exactly what they are looking to do, but they canâ€™t do it openly. It simply will not work.â€
Yoffie said the idea would not even work on its own terms to promote Jewish identity. â€œThereâ€™s absolutely nothing in 4,000 years of experience to suggest you can separate out religion and culture and simply teach culture to the exclusion of religion,â€ he said. â€œThose two pillars are inextricably intertwined.â€
In our current University Ministry study, Engaging the Culture, we are discussing the interaction of culture and faith. in lesson one, this study discusses the five models of church/culture interaction. None of models exclude one. Rabbi Yoffie obviously feels the same way, that one is not without the other.