When I hear 'outreach,' I think of 1. Chabad 2. Intermarriage Sometimes the other way around.

The issue of intermarriage and the concept 'outreach' often travel together. The majority of BJPA articles directly concerned with outreach published since 1990 explicitly focus on intermarried couples and their families.

That hasn't always been the case!

The earliest article BJPA has with 'outreach' in the title is from 1970, when we were concerned about outreach to adolescents, then schools, then the elderly, then recent Jewish immigrant groups, then the marginally affiliated, until 1990, when intermarriage/interfaith issues seem to have established a pretty firm claim on the term.

One blatant exception is the 1999 article Alienated Jews: What about Outreach to Jewish Lesbians? On the other hand, recent articles that don't focus entirely on intermarriage focus on outreach to families with young children.

What happened? It can't be that we've finished the work with adolescents, the elderly, immigrant, and marginalized Jews, but considering the question prompts reflection on the full spectrum of insider/outsider boundaries (both religious and cultural) in American Judaism, and raises a potential criticism on a newer term, 'inreach,' a concept problematized by Hayim Herring and Kerry Olitzky in their article, Outreach vs. Inreach: An Unnecessary Dichotomy.