Shir Libeynu Logo
E-Update February 26, 2014
In This Edition 


1. Upcoming Shir Libeynu Services and Programs

a) This Saturday, March 1, 2014, 10:30 a.m.: Shabbat Morning Service at the MNJCC 

b) New Kiddush Policy

c) Jewish Learning Program - Inclusive Practices: No Shir Libeynite Left Behind, Saturday, March 1,  2014, 12:45 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. at the MNJCC  

d) Contemplative Chanting Services

e) Other upcoming services

f) Food and drink in the Chapel 


2. Help Wanted

       a) Kiddush help for our upcoming services

 b) Food contributions to kiddushes


3. Other Shir Libeynu Items

a) Topsy-Turvy Purim Carnival, Sunday, March 2,  2014, 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. at the MNJCC



Our Next Shabbat Morning Service  


March 1, 2014 / 26 Adar 1

@ 10:30 a.m.


This Saturday, our service includes the parsha (Torah portion) Pekude.

Also, Purim is in the air ...


 Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre

Michael Bernstein Memorial Chapel (3rd floor)

750 Spadina Avenue (@ Bloor)

 Shabbat: The Junior Edition

 Get ready to boo the bad guy when Eden tells the story of Purim. Afterward, Rebecca will show you how to make masks of all the people in the story. Do you want to be brave, beautiful Esther, wicked Haman or the very silly king?
You can wear your Purim costume or dress up afer you arrive.


  A light Kiddush lunch will be served afterwards.


*NEW* Kiddush Policy
You may note that starting this month, and for all subsequent unsponsored kiddushes to follow, our lunches will be a little lighter than in the past.  You can still count on bagels, gluten-free crackers, cream cheese and hummous, plus hot and cold beverages every month.  But the more elaborate - and expensive - spreads, with salads, sweets, special holiday foods and hard cheeses, will be reserved for the occasions when we receive generous financial support from sponsors. As we expand our programming,  we must also shift our limited financial resources and the efforts of our small volunteer base to our new and exciting classes, services and other events for the community.  Of course, we hope you will consider sponsoring a kiddush in honour of a simcha, to remember a loved one or to celebrate a milestone or event. 

So come to our services and then enjoy our kiddushes afterwards, as well as the new learning workshops that will take place later in the day, after the lunches (no food or drink in the chapel, please).  As some of our mothers used to say: "It's not just the food, it's the company," and we are blessed with plenty of both at Shir Libeynu.
For information on how to help out with kiddushes, please see the "Help Wanted" section below.




 Inclusive Practices:

No Shir Libeynite Left Behind

This is an informal series of Jewish learning workshops on various topics that our members say are important and relevant to them.  They will take place after the kiddush, in the chapel, usually starting at 12:45 p.m. and ending at 2 p.m. You do not need expertise in any of these topics in order to participate. If they are of interest to you, please join us whether or not you make it to the Shabbat service in the morning.


Here is a list of upcoming workshops (including recent changes to the March and May programs), subject to change:    


*THIS* Saturday, March 1st: It Means What?:  A Discussion of 3 primary siddur prayers, their meaning and significance for contemporary Jews, led by Aviva;


April: Tefillah 101 - Innovation/Appropriation in Jewish Ritual, led by Aviva, with the participation of other members;


May: The Truth about Masada: Our Mythic Martyrs, led by Brian Smith;


September:  Finding Your Way Around the Machzor (High Holy Days Prayer Book), led by Aviva.


Please note that absolutely NO food or drink (other than water) is allowed in the Michael Bernstein Memorial Chapel.


Other Upcoming Services


Contemplative Chanting Services

Where Prayer, Silence and Melodious Soul-Jamming Meet
Upcoming Contemplative Services: April 19th & June 7th


Join us on a joyful journey to "an island in time," as Abraham Joshua Heschel has described Shabbat.  Through music and chanting, with some grounding in silence, we catch our breaths, we pray, and find innovative ways to navigate our way to the pleasures of connecting to the here and now, to Shabbat and to community.
These services are led by Lorne Blumer, with the assistance of fellow Shir Libeynu soul jammers Justine Apple, Helen Bauer, Lorne Gould, Harvey Weisfeld and Penny Winestock.
Light refreshments will be served after the service.
Childcare will not be available.
 More Shabbat Morning Services This Spring

April 5 and May 3

@ 10:30 a.m.

Everyone is welcome at our inclusive, egalitarian and participatory Shabbat morning services. A free educational children's program is offered during each morning service and a light Kiddush lunch is served immediately afterwards, followed by our new afternoon discussion group.

Watch for further details about our upcoming Shabbat morning services.

Food and Drink in the Chapel

Please note that absolutely NO food or drink (other than water) is allowed in the Michael Bernstein Memorial Chapel, where our services are held. This rule applies not only during services, but also during discussion groups, or any other time the chapel is being used. Shir Libeynu's continued use of this beautiful space depends upon compliance with this rule. 

  All services take place at 

 Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre

Michael Bernstein Memorial Chapel (3rd floor)

750 Spadina Avenue (@ Bloor)




Kiddush Helpers for Shabbat Morning Services


 Saturday, March 1 or Saturday, April 3

We need energetic people to come in a little early to help our board volunteer and our staff person prepare for the kiddush(es) and clean up afterwards.  Help would be required from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. AND 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. This is a great way to get involved and to give back. 
Community service hours available for high school students.

Please email if you would like to volunteer for the March or April kiddush.



Food Contributions to Kiddushes


Contributions of dessert (baked goods, fruit platter) to our Shabbat kiddushes for all to enjoy are most welcome.  

Please notify us by the Wednesday before the kiddush of your intention, and we will tell you how and where to bring your item. Write to us, and give us a description and quantity to help us plan.





Topsy-Turvy Purim Carnival

This Sunday, March 2

10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.


Calling all princesses, superheroes, ballerinas and monsters!


Costumes, Bouncy Castle, Face Painting, Balloon Animals, Prizes, Crafts, Games, Dance Party, Jungle Gym and More!


Keep an eye out for your favourite characters from the Purim story!


$15 per family (up to 5 people)


Bring a non-perishable food item to be donated to the Daily Bread Food Bank


Kosher lunch and Hamentashen included!


Info: 416-924-6211 x388 or 



Shir Libeynu is pleased to be participating in the annual MNJCC Purim Carnival for the first time!   




 Join Shir Libeynu's 

New Facebook Group   


Join our Facebook group


Shir Libeynu Fund

Proceeds from the fund will go towards ensuring that Shir Libeynu continues to thrive while ensuring access to everyone, regardless of their financial situation.


Click here to donate to the Shir Libeynu Fund (please note that we do not have credit card capability - just PayPal). 


Alternatively, you can make out a cheque to Congregation Shir Libeynu (please write "Shir Libeynu Fund" in the "Memo" or "Re" section on the cheque) and mail it to


Shir Libeynu, 

P.O Box 73509

Toronto, Ontario

M6C 4A7


Please send an email message to 

stating the reason for your donation so we can acknowledge it in the Shabbat handout and on our website. Donations in any amount are welcome and income tax receipts will be issued.




The congregation holds Shabbat services one  Saturday morning of each month, in the Michael Bernstein Chapel, on the 3rd floor of the Miles Nadal JCC, followed by a light Kiddush. A free Shabbat program is offered for children during services. We also offer adult education workshops and programs, the possibility to participate in our choir and chanting events, as well as holiday celebrations and Oneg Shabbat dinners throughout the year.


Congregation Shir Libeynu is unaffiliated, liberal, inclusive and egalitarian. Our participatory services combine tradition and innovation. Shir Libeynu is Hebrew for "song of our hearts," and our services include prayers and music both ancient and modern. Our diverse community is a welcoming one. 

Need more information? Please contact us at: or at (416) 465-5488.  


Congregation Shir Libeynu 

Our Mailing Address:

P.O Box 73509

Toronto, Ontario, M6C 4A7