2016 State of the DJC

The nine Community Conversations in our Year of Wrestling Together culminated in a stronger, clearer brit (covenant) between our community and our extraordinary rabbi, as well as a courageous, radically inclusive, and innovative new policy concerning ritual leadership roles. Visit http://djctoronto.com/year-wrestling-jews-non-jews-ritual-leadership-roles-djc/ to read our decision. 

We’ve seen continued growth in programming, including Shabbat UNServices, at the same time that Rabbi Miriam is shepherding more and more of us through life-cycle events, from brit/bris milah to funerals. Meanwhile, the Board remains focused on navigating the difficult government process required to enable Cantor Lisa able to perform inter-faith marriages for our community.

In 2015/2016 (5776), our weekly DJC Jewish Studies Program was as vibrant as ever, with 87 students from JK-Grade 6, while ten extraordinary young men and women celebrated their B’nei Mitzvah together on May 28 as part of our year-long program. We also had individual bar and bat mitzvahs throughout the year. 

Meanwhile, efforts within our community have been nothing less than inspiring: from the Accessibility Initiative, whose efforts contributed to Eastminster United’s decision to undertake renovations this summer to make the church accessible; to the Social Justice Committee, who led the charge in raising $57,000 for the DJC’s Syrian refugee response, and is spearheading our community’s efforts to sponsor a Syrian family of seven expected in the fall. (Visit  http://djctoronto.com/category/refugee-sponsorship/ for regular updates.) And there is much else happening, from the bold outreach of our Multi-Faith Committee, to the rich discussions of our Movie Night and Reading Circle, to the essential contributions of our Chesed Committee, to the launch of a new Pride Committee. 

To read the Report of Activities presented at our Annual General Meeting, click here: 2015-2016 Report of DJC Activities.

Financially, the DJC remains healthy, but only because fundraising fills the gap. In 2015, we earned nearly $283,000 in membership dues, High Holyday ticket sales, and tuition fees, against more than $312,00 in expenses, the majority of which are comprised of salaries for our Rabbi, Cantor, administrative staff, and school teachers. It’s only with nearly $48,000 in donations that we posted a surplus.

To read the Finance Update for the year ending December 31, 2015, which was presented at our Annual General Meeting, click here: 2015 Financial Update. Or, for our complete audited financial statements, contact info@djctoronto.com.

As a result, for the coming High Holydays, we’re raising membership fees for the first time since 2013. Our new fees remain highly competitive when compared to other communities, and we remain committed to ensuring that no one is turned away for financial reasons; simply email info@djctoronto.com to learn more.

For more detail about these fee increases, as presented at our Annual General Meeting, click here: 2016 Fee Increase Overview.

If you have any questions or comments, please email us at info@djctoronto.com.

The Board, in partnership with Rabbi Miriam