The song of the trees mirror the story of our own history.Today is my
mother’s yahrtzeit. She passed away 30 years ago at the tender age
of 57. Like many of you, I become very introspective on a yahrtzeit day. I find
myself reflecting on the past and how it connects me to the present.
A few days ago I was in the Caribbean,
viewing the bluer-than-blue water and the greener-than-green rain...
Windows provide distance, the ability to see events from a removed, safe vantage point.I am blessed in
my office with three large southern exposure
windows. Rare is the day that I don’t rotate my chair 90 degrees,
taking a short break from whatever I am doing, and stare out
onto Warwick Avenue. I can watch the Robbins Hebrew Academy students head
home from school or our shul’s...
Last month, Rav Baruch and I spent four glorious(read—FREEZING) days at the ReNEWed Jewish Leaders
Conference. Seventy-three executive directors and rabbis representing
nearly 250,000 Jews affiliated through our synagogues were invited to learn, share practice issues
and problem-solve with academics and business leaders. In its fifth year,
the program has presented
Cuisine, in addition to text and melody, is important in the survival of Judaism.Particularly during the winter, I enjoy comfort food, a good book and
music to stir the soul. Each makes claims on my identity.
In The Encyclopedia of Jewish Food, the late Gil Marks points to
adaptation and transmission as essential to Jewish cuisine. In Jews and
Words, Amos Oz and Fania Oz-Saltzberger make...
Monday Morning Mishpacha ProgramDue to overwhelming demand, a Monday session of the popular Mishpacha: Toddlers, Tunes and Treats program for children ages 1 to 3 with a parent, grandparent or caregiver is now being offered, beginning Monday, January 12. Spaces are limited; register early to avoid disappointment. For more information, contact Jo Swartz at 416-781-3514 ext. 230.
A chance for singers of all ages and musical backgrounds to join together and have fun singing with the ever-entertaining Cantor Simon Spiro. Broadway, Pop, Hebrew, Yiddish and more...If it's on vinyl, we'll be singing it! Regular rehearsals throughout the year will culminate in a 2015 performance with a professional band. Contact Marlene Laba at 416-781-3514 ext. 234.
The 16th season of Out of the Cold resumes on Tuesday nights beginning January 6, 2015 and is run jointly with Beth Sholom Synagogue out of their premises. It provides a hot meal, clothing, entertainment and an art program for 175 of Toronto’s homeless and needy, and offers sleeping accommodations, a hot breakfast, bagged lunch and a subway token for the 55 overnight guests each week....
Thank you to so many of you who spoke to me
over the High Holidays wishing me well and encouraging many of our initiatives.
Beth Tzedec continues to be at the forefront of Conservative Judaism.
On October 6, we hosted The Future of Jewish Life in the Diaspora
with Chancellor Arnold Eisen of the Jewish Theological Seminary in dialogue
with writer and film-maker David Bezmozgis and moderated...
Take the opportunity to study and reflect on what we—as Conservative Jews—uniquely do.A hallmark of Conservative Judaism has been
a fidelity to Jewish law and observance combined with an awareness of the
historic development of Judaism. In mid-19th century Europe, the forerunner of
what came to be Conservative Judaism called itself Positive-Historical Judaism. “Positive” meant...
There are eight qualities of leadership we find in the BibleThe recent election of Kathleen Wynne as Premier of Ontario
and the race for Mayor of Toronto have focused attention
on the nature and quality of leadership.Decisions
by Prime Minister Harper, President Obama and
Prime Minister Netanyahu draw attention to different dimensions
of leadership in times of national stability,...
I want Beth Tzedec to transform the way our members experience their lives Jewishly.My connection to Beth Tzedec Congregation
began with my maternal great-grandparents who were members of Goel Tzedec, one
of our two predecessor synagogues. My parents joined Beth Tzedec in 1955 when
they moved with their then two young sons into Cedarvale. I attended Beth
Tzedec Day School (which would later...
Yom Kippur – Dancing Cheek to Cheek
If Rosh Hashanah is about awareness of God, a proclamation
of divine sovereignty and transcendence, then Yom Kippur is about getting close
to God. The ritual is a “dance” to help
establish the connection, reveal our personality and demonstrate by our
behaviour that we want such a relationship to exist.
Our tradition teaches that...
Dear Friends,This has been a challenging summer for the Jewish community: the kidnapping and killing of "our boys", the revenge murder of a young Palestinian, the missiles from Gaza, the Israeli defensive response, the missiles from Gaza, the need for diplomatic and political advocacy, the missiles from Gaza. Many members of our congregation are in Israel; others have children, siblings,...
In Judaism, we know the power of the spoken
We will shortly be recognizing the 50th
anniversary of Mississippi Freedom Summer, the historic campaign to register as
many African-American voters in Mississippi as possible. As was the case in
many elements of the march for civil rights, Jews played a prominent role. As
Cheryl Greenberg writes in Troubling the
Life is for living. Don’t wait. Go out and
As I write this, Aliza and I are still
doing the switch from Pesaẖ dishes to ẖametz dishes, even though Pesaẖ ended more than just a day or two ago.
True that it’s a big job and we lead busy lives, but that’s not the only reason
it takes us so long. Our Pesaẖ involves more than dishes—we have Egyptian