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Hanukkah Sameach

Nes Gadol Haya Sham - a great miracle happened there

…a small band of Jews defeated the mighty Greek armies.

Shabbat Bulletin - December 16, 2017





June 24-July 8, 2018

Krakow Ghetto Deportation area. Empty Chairs Monument

We then went to the deportation area of the Kraków Ghetto.  The Kraków Ghetto is the smallest ghetto, while the Warsaw Ghetto is largest. Before the ghetto was established, 3,000 Jews lived in the area that would become the ghetto.  The largest amount in the ghetto was 20,000 in an 18 block area.  Because there were 68,000 Jews of Kraków killed, the Empty Chair Monument has 68 chairs to represent the 68,000 Jews executed here when the ghetto was liquidated (Note: Other places say 70 chairs. I didn’t count.)  There are two meanings they used chairs for the monument according to our tour guide.  The first is that since Jews were often moved, they were told to bring their belongings.  Because of that, chairs, tables, and wardrobes littered the area.  The second meaning is to symbolize waiting to be exterminated, an idea reinforced by the Nazi’s who apparently made the ghetto wall in the shape of Jewish tombstones.

Let yourself be blown away by the biggest annual Jewish music festival in the world in old Krakow, spend a Shabbat in the ancient Kabbalistic town of Tzfat, relax with a glass of wine in upper Galilee, admire the grottoes of Rosh ha-Nikra, float in the Dead Sea, feel alive in Jerusalem like never before - all that, in the company of our Rabbi and Cantor, enjoying their warm personalities; enhanced stories; inspiring presentations; entertaining programs; and much more.

<click for full details>

The Winter's Tale;

Sunday Nights with Rabbi Eli

The mindset of a Jew of the late Second Temple era,

and a venture into the origins of Rabbis

We are naturally biased to think of our forebears/(forebearers) as people who held much the same values and strove for much the same goals and objectives that we hold sacred in their memory to this day - merely by using different means and ways, such as were available to them in their times. But... did they really?

Hanukkah Sameach, Rabbi Eli...

Rabbi Eli explains the major paradigmatic shift that occurred in Jewish worldview with the destruction of the Temple, and dispels some common myths about the origins of the Rabbinic Judaism.

It’s worth a look.

The lecture is exactly 1 hour long, plus Q&A.

This video is unlisted on our YouTube channel:

Or watch the embedded video on Rabbi Eli’s Blog at:

The mindset of a Jew of the late Second Temple era

See you at the next “Sunday Nights with Rabbi Eli”

Has the Biblical text remained unchanged through the ages?

Your Life Moments


Dec. 9    Sheilah Solomon

Dec. 10  Daphna Grossman

Dec. 13  Seymour Goldlust

Dec. 14  Selma Opler

Dec. 16  Minnie Peters

Dec. 20  Gloria Riesel

Dec. 22  Marilyn Richmond


Dec. 10  Jack & Carole Abrahams

Dec. 14  Josef & Cindy Ber

Dec.16   Morris & Nicole Anidjar

Dec. 20  Reuben & Jenny Finkelshtain

Dec. 21  Dr. Brian Goldman & Tamara Broder


Dec. 9  Salima Dagan, mother of Isaak  

Dec. 9  Isaac Daniels, father of Dina Wolfe

Dec. 9  Sam Fischer, father of Nina Rubin & Gloria Riesel

Dec. 17  Rivka Super, mother of Dora Usher

Dec. 18  Morris Weisman, husband of Esther

Dec. 19  George Biro, father of Peter Biro

Dec. 21  Nathan Kushner, father of Betty Siegel-Snyder

Rosh Chodesh service

with Cantor David and his Choir.

Remember - Don’t Forget - Take Action

Rabbi’s Discretionary Fund

Betty Siegel-Snyder

Torah Restoration Fund

Deborah Berlach & Ron Csillag

Remember with your mouth, don’t forget with your heart,

take action as not to forget.

Why light the Menorah and ignore the War?

Unlike many Jewish holidays, Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, is not mentioned in the Bible. The historical events upon which the celebration is based are recorded in Maccabees I and II, two books contained within a later collection of writings. Although Hanukkah is considered a “minor” Jewish festival, today it ranks—along with Passover and Purim—as one of the most beloved Jewish family holidays.

In the year 168 B.C.E., the Syrian tyrant Antiochus sent his soldiers to Jerusalem. The Syrians desecrated the Temple, the holiest place for Jews at that time.  Antiochus also abolished Judaism, outlawing the observance of Shabbat and the Festivals, as well as circumcision.  Altars and idols were set up for the worship of Greek gods and he offered Jews two options:  conversion or death.

On the 25th day of the Hebrew month of Kislev, the Temple was renamed for the Greek god Zeus. A resistance movement— led by a priestly family known as the Maccabees—developed against the cruelty of Antiochus. The head of the family was Mattathias, an elderly man.  His son, Judah, became the chief strategist and military leader of the resistance. Though outnumbered, Judah Maccabee and his fighters miraculously won two major battles, routing the Syrians decisively.

Hanukkah evokes stirring images of Jewish valor against overwhelming odds; the refusal to submit to the religious demands of an empire practicing idolatry, the struggle against total assimilation into Hellenistic culture and loss of Jewish identity, and the fight for Jewish political autonomy and self-determination.

Hanukkah, which means “dedication,” is the festival that commemorates the purification and rededication of the Temple following the defilement caused by the Greeks during their occupation of that holy place. Today, the holiday reminds Jews to rededicate themselves to stand against forces that would destroy Judaism and to keep alive the flame of Jewish religion, culture, and peoplehood so that it may be passed onto the next generation.

When the Maccabees entered the Temple and began to reclaim it from the Greeks, they immediately relit the ner tamid (eternal light), which burned constantly in the Temple and has a parallel in our synagogues to this day. In the Temple, they found a single jar of oil, which was sufficient for only one day. The messenger who was sent to secure additional oil took eight days to complete his mission, and miraculously, the single jar of oil continued to burn until his return. The rabbis of the Talmud attributed the eight days of Hanukkah to the miracle of this single jar of oil.

The transformation of Hanukkah became linked to the growth of North American Jewry within its unique environment. The elevation of Hanukkah to a major holiday was the result of Jews acculturating themselves to a North America that was overwhelmingly Christian in population and symbols.

Although Hanukkah had become an important holiday among North American Jews by the 1920s, it would be incorrect to regard it as an imitation of Christmas with an emphasis on the exchange of presents. Rather, North American Jews use this holiday as a celebration of family, reinforcing Jewish identity in a place whose population may be overwhelmingly Christian but in which Jews feel at home. Hanukkah, therefore, is a means for North American Jews to feel a kinship with their neighbors, while simultaneously asserting their Jewish distinctiveness.  inContext

For others, the miracle was light.

Will we Rise to the Challenge this Year?


“Put off study,  put off moral action, and the next thing you know, other issues crop up to make the next moment also an inopportune time to act.”

Perek 2 Mishnah 5

...Part of Hanukkah’s popularity is due to ‘mazel’ (good fortune). In America, it has become the focus of an all out attempt by Jewish parents to reduce their children's ‘outsider’ status at Christmas time. In Israel, Hanukkah vas strengthened by becoming the focus of nationalist feelings. The Maccabees were hailed as fighters for national independence as opposed to the ‘Galut Jews’ who were seen as passive towards their oppressors. Part of the Hanukkah mythos is the image of the struggle between the good guys (the Maccabees) and the bad guys (the Greeks); of Judah Maccabee, religious freedom fighter, against Antiochus, the mad tyrant. Since the righteous so rarely win in history, it is exciting to sing the “al hanissim" prayer celebrating the miracle of The delivery “of the many into the hands of the few, the wicked into the hands of the righteous”. (Prayer Book)

The actual facts of Hanukkah are not quite as edifying as all that. The war was less a battle of Jews against their oppressors, the Greeks, than a civil war between factions of Jews. The Maccabean victory was far from decisive; it resembled, at best, a temporary peace. It is hard to believe but at first, the divine miracle was not appreciated by the Rabbis. And the victorious Jews divided almost immediately over how to deal with their newly won freedom. In time, the holiday all but disappeared - only to be revived by Jews seeking a rallying point against Roman domination and a puppet government. In short, history is rarely as neat and as edifying as later ideology makes it out to be. Divine miracles are usually more ambiguous and less instantly credible than we think. And yet, if we strip away the patina of piety and propaganda, the real Facts of Hanukkah may be even more instructive to us. The Hanukkah story provides powerful analogies to our present situation which can give us insight into this generation's challenges and how to deal with them.

… Omitted sections from Irving Greenberg’s “guide to hanukkah” ...

The battle of Hanukkah is being fought again in this time, It is our task to fight it - through joy, tradition and family life, through hope and realistic dreams, through partial solutions and visionary persistence. Pessimists and assimilationists have often told us that we have no more oil to burn, that we must surrender to the darkness.

With the help of God, enough Jews will light the lamps; though our flame may flicker, it will never go out.




December 13


7:30-8:30 pm

Shul Kiddush


All are



to the public

at no cost


Parsha of The Week

with Judy Hazan

Join this lively group every Wednesday night at 7:30 PM at The Lodzer where we study the week’s sedra together.

Classes are informal and no prior knowledge or preparation is required.

The purpose of the class is to learn the story of the parsha, determine its most important elements and tie its morals and lessons into our daily lives.

Judy Hazan 416-704-1693


December 14

7 - 8 PM

Kiddush Room

There will be

no Hebrew

classes on

December 28


January 11.


Hebrew Classes

Conversational Hebrew classes are on-going at the shul on Thursdays from

7:00 - 8:00 pm.

If you, or someone you know is interested in joining this fun, interactive learning group please contact


קח עוד כוס קפה


Begins sunset of


December 12


December 16

Chanukah Kiddush

Ends nightfall of


December 20



Chanukah commemorates the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem after a group of Jewish warriors defeated the occupying mighty Greek armies.


The proper response, as Hanukkah teaches, is not to curse the darkness but to light a candle.

R. Irving Greenberg


Celebrate every night of Chanukah

with song, hot latkes and

gifts for the children.



December 16

28 Kislev


Rosh Chodesh


Chanukah Kiddush


Rabbi Eli



David Young

B’aal Koreh:
Harvey Bitterman



9:12 AM

Led by

Frank Steiman


9:30 AM

Please help us out by coming early…

We need a minyan to start!

This week’s

Kiddush Lunch

is sponsored by

the Bernstein family

in honour of

Ryan’s Bar Mitzvah

Torah Times

Triennial Year 2

Parashat: Mikketz

Genesis 41:1 - 44:17

1: 41:53-57 (p. 158)

2: 42:1-5

3: 42:6-18

4: 42:19-28

5: 42:29-38

6: 43:1-7

7: 43:8-15

maftir: Numbers 7:30-41 (p. 598)


Shabbat Chanukah

Zechariah 2:14-4:7 (p.987)

Candle Lighting:

4:23 p.m. – Friday


5:31 p.m. – Saturday

Shabbat Miketz

Genesis 41:1-44:17

Joseph’s station in life is dramatically improved when he interprets the dreams of the Pharaoh.

Predictions of seven years of plentitude followed by seven years of famine provide Joseph with the opportunity to manage the food supply. The famine hits the land of Canaan where Jacob’s family lives. Hearing of the abundance in Egypt, Jacob sends his sons, except Benjamin, to Egypt in search of asylum. Joseph recognizes his brothers immediately but does not reveal his true identity until next week’s Torah portion.



December 23

5 Tevet


Shabbat Vayigash

Genesis 44:18-47:27

Vayigash begins with the confrontation between Judah and Joseph, whose identity is still unknown to his brothers. Judah pleads with Joseph to take him as a slave in place of Benjamin.

Joseph hears Judah and then dramatically reveals his identity to his brothers. He instructs them to bring Jacob to Egypt and to settle there in Goshen.


December 24

On the

13th Night of


Dinner 6 PM

Film following


Prepay at office

or call Sarah

to reserve



Shul Kiddush



“We’re Cool with Yule!”


“I eat Chinese food on Christmas, go to the movie theater too, cause there just ain’t much else to do on Christmas...

When you’re a Jew.” /BWM

Rafi’s Annual

Kosher Chrismukkah

Chinese Food and a Movie

The Women's Balcony

On the day of Osher's bar mitzvah, the men look up adoringly at the women's balcony where their wives, daughters, sisters, cousins, and grandmothers are gathered. Then disaster strikes: the floor under the balcony gives way, leaving several people injured and one comatose. When Rabbi David arrives, the congregation gathers around him now that their elderly rabbi is distraught and confused in the wake of the accident. Taking advantage of his new-found authority, he insists that the men have not done enough to ensure their women's modesty, and that the balcony tragedy is a divine warning to that effect. This leads to a clash with Osher's grandmother Ettie, a pious woman who cannot accept the notion that God demands blind subjugation. Ettie and her friends raise money to restore the women's balcony, but Rabbi David decides to distribute those funds elsewhere. A feud breaks out, driving a wedge between husbands and wives — one that they can only repair by coming together in faith and harmony.


December 27



Julian Tuwim

We Polish Jews:

The Troubled Holocaust Legacy

of Julian Tuwim, 1894–1953

Poet Julian Tuwim was among the first and most powerful literary voices of the Holocaust experience.

Born in Lodz, Tuwim was a leading Polish-Jewish poet during the 1920–30s. In 1944, Tuwim wrote an anguished lament and manifesto of murdered Jewry, ‘We Polish Jews,’ as a refugee in New York.

Tough luck!

“For antisemites, I am a Jew and my poetry is Jewish.
For Jewish nationalists, I am a traitor and renegade.”  /JT


Julian Tuwim in conversation with

Sheldon Richmond on why they

returned to Lodz after the Shoah.

Fast of Tevet 10

Asara B'Tevet

Begins sunrise of


December 28

10 Tevet

Ends nightfall of


December 28


The Tenth of Tevet marks Nebuchadnezzar's siege of Jerusalem 2,500 years ago.


The siege of Yerushalayim began on the 10th of Tevet, so began the whole chain of calamities which finally ended with the destruction of the Beit HaMikdash.

In the State of Israel, Kaddish is recited on this day for people whose date or place of death is unknown. Consequently, many rabbis have designated it as a day of remembrance for the Holocaust.


January 1



January 8

Week 46

Karate lessons

For Seniors

Join us

with open hands

and Kick back!

Mondays & Fridays


Kiddush Breakfast

(10 - 11 AM)ish

Dojo Lodzer

Upstairs Hall

Kiai - Sen!


Our very own Black belt, David Birken, is leading the class

$5.00 donation to the shul, per class waived for those that attend the morning minyan.

Wear sneakers and non-restrictive clothing.

Karate for Seniors

Learn a Dynamic new skill for Fun and Focus - at YOUR own pace!

Safe, friendly,
keep fit exercise classes
Build strength and vitality
Learn Self-defense

Morning Minyanaires - developing body, mind and spirit - we daven, fress, sometimes walk, and now… we kick butt.

Karate Kata 1 - Heian Shodan

Karate Kata 2 - Heian Nidan

Karate Kata 3 - Heian Sandan

Karate Kata 4 - Heian Yondan

Focus, Respect, Self-Control

“If you can’t do it slow, you can’t do it fast”

Seniors - Tough as glass


January 14

Shul Kiddush


6:30 pm

All Welcome

No Charge

Please inform Sarah that you’ll be coming.



As the Bard taught us,

the Schule must go on.

The Winter's Tale;

Sunday Nights with Rabbi Eli

Has the Biblical text remained unchanged through the ages?


January 18

8:00 PM

Book Chat

with Cathy Zeldin

Shul Kiddush


If you haven't attended before, please feel free to join us.  Having read the book is not a prerequisite to come out and enjoy this group, share thoughts and pick up ideas on books you'd like to read.

Book Chat

City of Women

By David R. Gillham

It is 1943 - the height of the Second World War - and Berlin has essentially become a city of women. In this page-turning novel, David Gillham explores what happens to ordinary people thrust into extraordinary times, and how the choices they make can be the difference between life and death.

City of Women by Gillham

It is 1943 - the height of the Second World War - and Berlin has essentially become a city of women.

Sigrid Schröder is, for all intents and purposes, the model German soldier's wife: She goes to work every day, does as much with her rations as she can, and dutifully cares for her meddling mother-in-law, all the while ignoring the horrific immoralities of the regime. But behind this façade is an entirely different Sigrid, a woman who dreams of her former lover, now lost in the chaos of the war. Her lover is a Jew.

But Sigrid is not the only one with secrets.

A high ranking SS officer and his family move down the hall and Sigrid finds herself pulled into their orbit. A young woman doing her duty-year is out of excuses before Sigrid can even ask her any questions. And then there's the blind man selling pencils on the corner, whose eyes Sigrid can feel following her from behind the darkness of his goggles.

Soon Sigrid is embroiled in a world she knew nothing about, and as her eyes open to the reality around her, the carefully constructed fortress of solitude she has built over the years begins to collapse. She must choose to act on what is right and what is wrong, and what falls somewhere in the shadows between the two. inContext

March 8, Stranger in the Woods

by Finkel.

April 26, The Painter from Shanghai by Epstein.

June 7, The Break by Vermette.


April 18


3:30 - 6 PM


War Museum


Please book the bus through Sarah.

It’s a full day trip.

We will be attending as a group.

You’ll typically have only 1 hour to explore the site.

Details TBA.

Word has it that Jeff Shabes will be lighting a candle this year. (He also has nice hair.)

Canadian Society for Yad Vashem


The National Holocaust Remembrance Day Ceremony commemorates the six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust and pays tribute to the survivors who rebuilt their lives in Canada. Many survivors participate in the event. The program includes a personal account by a Holocaust survivor, as well as addresses by the leaders of major Canadian political parties.

The theme of the 2018 National Holocaust Remembrance Day Ceremony is “Remembering the Past, Shaping the Future: The Importance of Remembering the Holocaust”.

An informal reception will follow the Ceremony.


May 27, 2018






We need volunteers

to work on the

Lodzer’s 65th anniversary

Help us Sell Ad Space in the

Lodzer Synagogue

Sixty-fifth Anniversary

Tribute Book

To Volunteer, contact:




Jewish Ethics in Torah and Customs

the after Shabbat discussion group led by Jonathan Usher

Based on A Code of Jewish Ethics Vol.1 by Rabbi Joseph Telushkin.

We discussed nature vs. nurture  and the Yetzer Hatov vs. Yetzer Hara and decided that people are composed of a bit of all of them.

The Peacock Angel

is one of the central figures of Yezidi belief.

Yezidi are being killed for being 'devil worshipers'.

Project Abraham is an initiative of The Mozuud Freedom Foundation, which serves to support resettlement for victims of persecution.

For the past two years, Project Abraham volunteers from the Toronto community have worked to support the Yezidis community by sponsoring families for reunification and creating resettlement groups for GARs.  Recently members of Project Abraham spoke in front of the Standing Committee on Immigration and Resettlement in Ottawa (Dec. 5th, 2017; Watch on ParlVu)  to give our testimony regarding our experience, and offering recommendations to the committee with the desire that they be included in a report to the Government of Canada.

While the Government of Canada has recognized that Canada has a moral obligation to protect the Yazidis from the existential threat of genocide, and has responded by committing to relocate women and children survivors of ISIS to Canada, there are many areas of concern that need to be addressed.  Project Abraham’s brief to the Standing Committee documents the challenges the Yezidi victims of ISIS face in Canada, which are substantial, and our recommendations for addressing these.

Also, the existential threat to the Yezidis in Iraq is ongoing, as detailed by a Yezidi victim of ISIS, now a member of the GTA Yezidi community, who spoke before the Standing Committee.  Her plea is for the Government of Canada to continue to bring Yezidis who want to relocate to Canada.   It is incumbent on Canada, as a signee to the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, to continue to address the Yezidis genocide.  It is an obligation that must not end with the current initiative since it is not only fundamental to the role Canada has taken in the world as a peace keeper, and a nation that respects the rights of all peoples to live in freedom, it is also our duty by international agreement.  We cannot claim the moral high ground by limiting sanctuary for a people who are experiencing genocide.  We must, as a moral nation, do our fullest to uphold our commitment and continue to help the survivors.

The Yezidi community of Canada needs our support.  Genocide demands it./gr

Come to a meeting.

Find out how you can get involved.


Menorah, St Andrews Square Edinburgh (Isi Davis)


The holiday of Hanukkah commemorates two very different elements. Celebrating the military victory by the Hasmoneans over the Hellenists, Syrian Greeks in around 164 BCE, and the miracle of the Menorah.

The oldest eyewitness account can be found in 1 Maccabees, which documents the military victory. 2 Maccabees written a few generations later, also focuses on the military achievements. There is no mention of the miracle of oil in either two books, neither is there any account in the Hebrew bible. In addition the great first century historian Josephus makes no mention of the miracle of the oil.

The Hanukkah story begins when Antiochus IV, decided to consolidate a single culture and religion in the region. Seeing Judaism as a threat, Antiochus outlawed Jewish practice and influenced Greek culture, he tried to influence Hellenism in the temple in Jerusalem. Scrolls were burnt and Jews were killed for refusing to give into Antiochus decree. Jews fought against Jews.


Was a form of Judaism in the ancient world, that combined Jewish religious tradition with elements of Greek culture- Wikipedia

Hellenism provoked an uprising by the countries priests called Maccabees. According to some scholars the revolt began due to internal fighting between religious fundamentalist and reformers. Hanukkah then celebrates the rescue of Judaism from cultural assimilation. What may be interesting is that assimilation is taking place today without any violence at an alarming pace.

The warrior Judah of Maccabee, drawn by Julius Schnorr von Carolsfeld (1794-1872)

What about the oil that becomes an integral part of Hanukkah? As the story goes, the Greek Hellenists destroyed all elements of Jewish religion, including the Menorah that stood within the temple. Oil was destroyed,  in order to make suitable oil, not ordinary oil, it had to be ritual oil, supposedly or miraculously it lasted for eight days and eight nights. Whether this miracle actually happened is questionable?

I suspect the story of the miraculous oil burning for eight days and nights may have been an attempt by later Rabbis to invent the story to cover up the event of Jews killing Jews. I also wonder if the Maccabean Civil War and revolt was necessary for the survival of Jewish identity?

A number of holidays challenge Jews today, especially when you consider Christmas falls near or at the same time as Hanukkah. Not withholding that Christmas on its own questions the existence of Santa Claus and places Jesus in the background. There are also parallels between the two religions. Gifts, trees or bushes, food and song. Although Hanukkah is not a religious holiday, we in the diaspora, enjoy days off work and some may even attend Christmas parties or parades as well as last minute shopping.


The dreidel or sevivon is a custom associated with Hanukkah. Rabbis have tried to find a connection between the dreidel and the Hanukkah story, other than one 19th century rabbi  who maintained that Jews played with the dreidel in order to fool the Greeks, if they were caught studying Torah.  The letters nun, gimel, hey and shin, which appear on the dreidel in the Diaspora, stand for a different meaning to that of the dreidel in Israel.

נֵס גָדוֹל הָיָה שָׁם

In the past generation, some Jews living in the Land of Israel decided that it would be proper to change the last word from “there” (שָׁם ) to “here” (פֹּה ) thus making the phrase whose initials are on the dreidel, “A great miracle occurred here.” Following this idea, the letters on the dreidel would be nun, gimel, hei, and pei, נגהפ inContext

Hanukkah also engulfs our senses. Latkes are a traditional food at Hanukkah. Latkes can be made of potatoes, mixed with matzo meal, eggs and fried in oil. There are debates on which toppings are the best. Latkes originated in Eastern Europe, not ancient Israel. They were first made with curd cheese rather than potatoes.  Greek Jews eat fried fish with asada cochin.  Jews of India enjoy Neyyappam, a kind of sweet cake. Syrian and Lebanese Jews celebrate with atayef, cheese filled pancakes deep fried. Sephardic Jews traditionally feast on hojaldre puff pastry with cheese.


The Still Small Voice - The Story of Jewish Ethics

William B. Silverman

(1913–2001), of Nashville’s The Temple Congregation Ohabai Sholom

“outspoken support for civil rights

will NOT bring harm to the Jewish community”

Robbing Thy Brother

The disciples of Rabbi Simon ben Shetach bought a donkey for their teacher from an Arab. To their joy, they found a pearl on it, and they rushed back to their teacher, saying: "From now on you need not work any more, for we bought a donkey from an Arab, and a pearl was found on it."

The rabbi asked, "Does its owner know of that?" When his pupils said "No, but when we bought the donkey we also acquired everything on its back," their teacher replied: "Go, and return the pearl to him."

"But," argued the disciples, "did not Rabbi Huna say that if you find something that belongs to a heathen, you may keep it?"

Their teacher replied: "Do you think that Simon ben Shetach is a barbarian? He would prefer to hear the Arab say, 'Blessed be the God of the Jews,' than possess all the riches of the world. It is written, 'Thou shalt not oppress thy neighbor’  Now thy neighbor is as thy brother, and thy brother is as thy neighbor. Return the jewel"

Cemetery plots for sale to members in good standing (three years minimum).

If you are a member (3 years or more) and want to buy a plot, the cost per plot is $2500.

If you know anyone wanting a plot - the person can pay three years' membership dues and then be entitled to buy a plot.

This is an opportunity to purchase before prices increase.


Please consider sponsoring a kiddush, or contributing to the building, programming, or any specific interest fund.


If anyone has tickets for any event that they would like to donate to the shul please let the office know. It is a simple way to raise money for our synagogue so please donate spare tickets and bid generously.

Tree of Life or

Seat Plaques
Remember family and friends by purchasing a leaf on our tree of life or a sanctuary seat plaque.

Lodzer Sisterhood Cookbooks
Great Gifts – just $20 each

Siddur Dedications

As you know, we now use the new-new siddur. For the low-low price of $18 per book these may be dedicated to your loved ones, yourself, family members and as gifts, or simply to support the shul.

Daily Minyan

Sunday – Friday: 9:00 am

Run by Arthur Zins - includes Breakfast following.

Come Daven, Fress & Schmooze,

then join in on a walk.

Saturdays: Shabbat Service

Birkot ha-Shachar 9:12 AM

 - (Led by Frank Steiman)
Yishtabach 9:30 AM

includes Kiddush Luncheon

Chesed Committee

Please call the shul office if you need support or if you know of one of our members who may need support. It remains confidential.


Making a difference

to our shul
As everyone knows, with our shul’s new rabbi and new direction, we are making changes to our services and
programming, and becoming more of a community. The Board discusses procedures and suggested innovations on a monthly basis.
If you have any suggestions please give them, in writing to Sarah, and, if you wish to speak at our monthly Monday night
Board meeting about your ideas, concerns, or interests, again, please let Sarah know.
It is your shul.

We want and need your input.

Want to contact the Rabbi?
Rabbi Eli is eager and very happy to speak to our congregants on a one-on-one basis about personal or shul issues. Please e-mail him at with your phone number and he will call you as soon as possible.


Jeff Shabes, President

Harvey Storm, 1st VP

Judy Hazen, 2nd VP

Morry Nosak, Treasurer

Marilyn Richmond, Secretary

Board Members

Frank Steiman

Henry Epstein

Joe Ber

Leon Pasternak (Honourary)

Rafi Remez

Roz Greene

Syd Markovitz

Rabbi Eli Courante

Cantor David Young

B’aal Koreh:

Harvey Bitterman


Arnie Yudell

Rafi Remez

Shabbat Handout:

Judy Hazan


Charles Greene

Office Manager:

Sarah Senior


Who we are - Contact Info


Bar and Bat Mitzvahs

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Lodzer Office

Sarah: 416-636-6665

Office Hours

Monday through Thursday

9am - 1pm and 2pm - 4pm


9am to 1pm

A Rabbi for all Occasions

Last Night’s Beer tasting was a ShaMash

Despite the weather… Oy, the weather. First snowfall. And cold.  It had to snow on this day? And the traffic. Nicht gesint. … It was almost a full turnout.

The kitchen was busy. Table setup was well underway. The heat was cranked up. Veggies and chips and dip for snacking. We were ready.

“Shalom, shalom ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to our not bi-monthly, not annual, but sporadic and definitely fun, Lodzer beer tasting. The Jolly Lodzer, beer tasting. Our fine volunteers will present to you, the first choice of the evening…”

Thanks to all the volunteers: Susan Yellin, Tamara Broder, Anita Johnson , Pearl Rosen , Roz Greene, Miriam Perez, Rochelle Michaels, Jack Greene. Special thanks to Rafi Remez, Rabbi Eli and all who came out to make this a truly special night.

Very Loose Ends…

Idea if you wish to add it in:

I am reading Alan Dershowitz - "The vanishing American Jew" written in 1998. He suggests that Jews might be vanishing because of assimilation, intermarriage, and not seeing any positive reasons for remaining Jewish.

On the latter point I was talking to a Jewish, intermarried, non-practicing friend, who reminded me of the great contribution that Jews have contributed to our society. Although he wants no part of it, he sees great value in the continuation of Judaism and Jewish culture.

So I was thinking that, if that’s what he wants, he should ensure it by making contributions to the Jewish community - to ensure the continuation of Judaism in Canada and the U.S. Currently we ask participants for donations, but not non-participants. We should ask non-observant Jews for donations as well./ju

The move to Jerusalem: some commentary.

Making the email rounds, from Bill Smith

Conrad Black -- "an inspired move":

Alan Dershowitz -- "perfect response to Obama's outrageous orchestration of the Security Council resolution":

Daniel Pomerantz -- "behind the hysteria", some history:

Caroline Glick -- "Trump's great and ingenious gifts":

David A. French -- "U.S. confronts the bigoted double standards of the international community":

JoshuaPundit -- international "responses ... hideously revealing":

On April 6, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Moscow issued a statement which should have led to extensive Israeli diplomatic efforts all over the world. The sensational part of the announcement is that Russia is the first country in the world to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in an official statement, signed by the president. inContext

The United States recognizes Jerusalem as the undivided capital of the State of Israel.

O’Canada… Carry on, regardless.