Rabbi's Message

How the Grinch Stole Chanukah

I get a little Grinchy around this time of the year.  I find the Christmas lights to be pretty and I delight in seeing the homes around my neighbourhood decorated with each family’s unique flair, but as Christmas takes over


Most of the prayers of Yom Kippur and the practices of teshuvah, of repentance and return, are opportunities to ask for forgiveness.  We surface remorse for the ways we messed up.  We become attuned to harmful behaviours we weren’t conscious

5778 Erev Rosh Hashanah sermon: HINENI ~ HERE I AM

Two Jewish friends meet each other on the street.  Diane says to Ruth – I just got back from a meditation retreat and I tell you, you have to try it. Ruth says – It’s not for me.  I can’t

5778 Rosh Hashanah sermon: HINENI ~ SHOWING UP FOR THE WORLD WE NEED

Cain has just killed his brother in a fit of jealousy.  It takes the Torah all of three and a half chapters – from the unfolding of the entire cosmos, to the creation of the first humans – and wham!

Being a Jew When There are Swastikas in the Street

I want us to talk about what it’s like to be a Jew in North America right now. For the past several decades, Jews, more specifically white, Ashkenazi Jews, have largely felt safe on this continent.  Watching angry, armed white

Responding to Charlottesville

“Wherever men and women are persecuted because of their race, religion, or political views, that place must – at that moment – become the center of the universe.” – Elie Wiesel.  Charlottesville, Virginia became the centre of the universe last

$15 and Fairness

I’m involved in an initiative that I want you to know about — the $15 and Fairness Campaign.  This initiative is working to raise Ontario employment standards, affecting a range of concerns from fairer wages, to sick leave, to the

Reflecting on 50 Years Since the Six-Day War

This June will mark fifty years since the Six-Day War between Israel and Egypt, Syria and Jordan.  The marking of a span of fifty years has deep significance in Jewish life.  It is called yovel / the Jubilee.  According to

Listening for New Life in Birdsong & Torah

I am grateful for my colleague and friend Aviva Chernick for the inspiring conversation and teachings that stirred these words. The earth is renewing itself. Trees that have been stark and bare for months are coming alive again, dotted with

Jewish Innovation, Life-Long Learning, and Where We Are

I recently participated in a three-day consultation in the U.S. with an organization called New Paradigm Spiritual Communities Initiative.  Headed by Rabbi Sid Schwarz, innovative Jewish leaders from across North America were invited to come together to share what we’ve