“No one doubts that Michael Steinhardt is a very generous man deeply committed to the Jewish people. He has poured enormous sums into day schools, campus activities and birthright israel, worthwhile programs all. He loves to challenge conventional thinking, and I have enjoyed jousting with him about the strengths and weakness of contemporary Jewish life.

“But no one can change the Jewish community in fundamental ways unless he works with those grassroots institutions that touch the everyday lives of the largest number of Jews. As we all know, the grassroots institution of the Jewish community is the synagogue. And Steinhardt’s problem is that he has contempt for the synagogue, particularly for the non-Orthodox synagogue.”