The Ambassadors completed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between our congregations about our potential merger and the process to take to make that happen. A memorandum of understanding (MOU) is an agreement between two or more parties outlined in a formal document. It is not legally binding but signals the willingness of the parties to move forward with a common line of action.  After numerous conversations with legal counsel, Board members and congregants, the MOU was distributed to each congregation.

The detailed MOU with its introduction will be distributed to all congregants of each congregation. The two synagogues will conduct a vote of its members. Or Chadash has established a mail-in ballot voting process which will culminate with counting votes publicly on Sunday, February 9th. Temple Emanu-El will have a Special Congregational Meeting on the same day, February 9th, where attendees will vote during the meeting, with alternative absentee balloting options to be announced. Both meetings will begin at 12:30 p.m. and end at 2:00 p.m. Details of these processes will be forthcoming to each congregation by your leadership.

As stated last week; if the MOU is approved by both congregations:

  • Boards of Directors vote to authorize expenditures related to preparations for merger
  • Apply for funding for expenses related to merger (IMPACT)
  • Hire a consultant to help with the steps in a merger
  • Create new committees to assist in development of the details in the Plan of Merger
  • Retain legal counsel to draft final documents in accordance with current Arizona Law, including Articles of Incorporation and Plan for Merger
  • Congregational vote on Plan of Merger

If the MOU is not approved by both congregations:

  • Work toward a merger will be suspended
  • Usual annual financial planning process will continue for each synagogue
  • Each Board will review their financial situation and work to mitigate losses for the current and upcoming fiscal year
  • Fundraising efforts through dues and donations will be redoubled. Expenses associated with programming, services and administration may be cut
  • Boards of Directors will consider merging Religious Schools while remaining as independent congregations

Please stay connected to find out more about the next steps in our ongoing conversation.

And please feel free to share your thoughts and comments by writing to our shared email account at