Mission | WHY WE EXIST
We make meaning and change the world.

Stephen Wise Temple and Schools is an inclusive community that seeks to inspire its diverse constituency to engage ever more deeply and personally in ongoing, significant acts of loving kindness (גמילות חסדים, G’milut Chasadim) and Tikkun Olam (עולםתיקון , repairing the world); the mindful study of Torah and the pursuit of wisdom (תלמוד תורה, Talmud Torah); and worship that inspires, uplifts, and connects us to God (עבודה, Avodah).

In all we do, and all we are, we strive to be inclusive, creative, and generous. Every aspect of Wise community life and work is informed by our unyielding commitment to these values, beginning with inclusivity. From its founding, Stephen Wise Temple was meant to be an open tent, welcoming and representing the many faces of Jewish life.

We will hear, tell, and celebrate the thousands of stories contained within the Wise world. In all we do, we will hold ourselves accountable to being a community for all, connecting people across ethnic, family, economic, and ideological lines. From many worlds, from many perspectives, we will build one community of Kavod (כבוד, respect).

We will be a place of innovation, a home to transformational ideas with the freedom to pioneer new models informed by our mission and in conversation with our ancient traditions. Creative, inspired thinking in all our endeavors will lead to new, focused models that position Wise at the forefront of the Jewish world.

We will be inspired to express magnanimity in every way. Our mission and principles will call us to give freely of our time, energy, resources, and spirit.

What does our commitment to Creativity,
Inclusivity, and Generosity really mean?

How do we foster a community of innovation that is broadly inclusive and inspires people to give of themselves to the efforts of that community?


We will engage in practices and principles that inspire innovation while honoring our Jewish tradition and building upon the Wise legacy.

We will explore new opportunities informed by our mission and be willing to shift our models to continue to adapt and innovate in a changing landscape of Jewish engagement.

We will constantly strive to incorporate the latest insights from the leading thinkers guiding institutional and organizational development, both from within and outside the Jewish community.

We will welcome experimentation; we will pilot, we will evaluate, we will iterate, we will glean learnings from our efforts that inform future endeavors, and we will measure success by the application of these lessons.


We will invite and celebrate the diversity of our ethnicities and cultures, sexual and gender identities, physical and intellectual abilities, religious observances, economic circumstances, and political perspectives.

We will honor each other, welcome each other, and – most importantly – recognize that in our Wise home, everyone sits and is nurtured at the same table.

Wise will be a place rife with discovery of others, where every participant is seen and appreciated for their unique gifts.

We will commit to ensuring that every aspect of community life at Wise will embrace the diverse and ever-changing lifestyles, needs, and abilities of the people in our community.

We will design all our offerings in a manner that recognizes our kaleidoscope of family makeup, worship style, and cultural practice and places them within the context of our Reform Jewish values.


The Wise community will be characterized by its commitment to supporting our community, giving of ourselves to the world, and being present for each other.

By living up to our ideals, we will foster a sense of openness to our innovation and diversity. Our Wise community will consist of people who inspire each other to give generously of their time, their knowledge, and their resources to the extent of their ability.

We will be a community of volunteers and professionals working together in dedication to realizing our mission and vision for the wellbeing of our community, Israel, and the world.