In This Edition
 

1.  Shir Libeynu and World Pride, 2014 

a) Shir Libeynu: Proud Since We Began

b) Friday June 20th - Kabbalat Shabbat @ 7: 30 p.m. & Shabbat  Dinner @ 8:45

     p.m. at the MNjcc 

c) Saturday, June 21st - World Pride Events

 i)  Interfaith Fair, 3:00 p.m.- 6:00 p.m at McGill Square

ii)  Sunset Interfaith Service. 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m at the Metropolitan United Church

       ii)  Havdallah Service, 9:15 p.m. at McGill Square

d) Wednesday, June 25th - Panel Discussion with The Aguda @ 7:30 p.m. at the

     MNjcc

e) Sunday, June 29th - Pride Parade

 

2.  Shir Libeynu Partnership Event

a) Heart to Heart Community Reception

Shir Libeynu:

Proud Since We Began

The following press release was prepared by our past president, Harriet Eisenkraft, in anticipation of World Pride.  Read about our congregation's unique past and how our philosophy is now more widely embraced. 

Going to Shul With Pride - Queer Rights and Religion at a Toronto Synagogue
 
Historically, members of the LGBTQ community have not found themselves welcome in most faith groups. But, in Toronto, one Jewish congregation has been supporting their rights and practicing inclusive rites for all for more than a decade.  Since 1996, Congregation Shir Libeynu, under the leadership of its co-founder Aviva Goldberg, has been in the forefront of a now-burgeoning movement within modern Judaism and other faith communities to accept and embrace its Queer members.

 

On June 20, 2014, at 7:30 p.m., the congregation will honour Pride at its eighth annual Shabbat (Sabbath) service, "celebrating the diversity in Judaism, welcoming all, straight and LGBTQ, including same-sex couples and their children, for all the milestones and life-cycle rituals.  And this has always been the case at Shir Libeynu," says Dr. Goldberg, also a scholar in religious studies and an assistant professor at York University, where she specializes in women's rituals and contemporary Jewish theologies.

 

Says Dr. Goldberg: "We understand Judaism, liberal or otherwise, to be open to diverse opinions and traditions.  Halacha (Jewish law) encompasses a range of perspectives, from the quite strict to the quite liberal."  The shul has always used liturgy, particularly in English, that is non-sexist and sought out prayers from a variety of Jewish sources that are LGBTQ- focussed and inclusive.

 

This year, the congregation has company among other groups in the Jewish community and beyond.  As part of World Pride, an interfaith contingent has emerged in the GTA that will hold a day-long event on June 21, downtown on the grounds of the Metropolitan United Church, where Shir Libeynu will join other religious groups in an outdoor fair, a youth service in the church sanctuary and an end-of Sabbath-service (Havdallah) that Dr. Goldberg will co-lead.  Shir Libeynu will also march in the June 29 parade with other religious communities.

 

Please join us for our Going to Shul with Pride service on Friday evening, June 20, in the third-floor chapel of the Miles Nadal JCC, where Shir Libeynu holds it regular monthly services and other events. Dr. Goldberg will lead a participatory service that celebrates the community while also affirming the experiences of LGBTQ individuals around the world, some of them in desperate straits.  The service will be song-filled, with musical liturgy led by our chazzan (cantorial soloist) , Daniela Gesundheit (who is also an indie singer-songwriter with her band, Snowblink).  We welcome all, LGBTQs and allies alike.

 

*************

 

Further details about the events mentioned here can be found below. Please share our story and our event listings with friends and family celebrating World Pride.

 

WORLD PRIDE IS JUST AROUND THE CORNER!

 

 Friday, June 20th to Sunday, June 29th

 

It's time to RSVP for Shir Libeynu's many events.

 

Kabbalat Shabbat: Going to Shul with PRIDE

Friday, June 20 @ 7:30 p.m.

Michael Bernstein Chapel at the MNjcc (750 Spadina Ave.)


Celebrate World Pride at our inclusive Kabbalat Shabbat service, featuring innovative liturgy for queer Jews and the people we love, contemporary readings and music. Shir Libeynu will celebrate as a community while affirming the experiences of LGBTQ individuals from around the world
 
Bring along partners, parents, children, grandchildren, zaidies, bubbies, former flames, future prospects and all your friends. LGBTQ members and allies from all communities are welcome.

Going to Shul with Pride: The Junior Edition
Make flags for the World Pride parade. Enjoy stories, snacks and fun with friends you haven't even met yet at our free educational children's program.

 

TO ATTEND THIS SERVICE, YOU MUST RSVP TO pride@shirlibeynu.ca. 
 
Friday, June 20 @ 8:45 p.m.

Room 318 at the MNjcc (750 Spadina Ave.)


The celebration of Shabbat continues with a kosher vegetarian dinner sponsored by Kulanu Toronto and other Jewish organizations. Israeli wine included! A DJ-led dance party will follow. A $10 minimum donation is requested. Please RSVP for the Shabbat dinner by Monday, June 16th at 5:00 p.m. Contact Kulanu for information on dinner reservations.
 

World Pride Interfaith Fair and Sunset Service and Havdallah

Saturday, June 21

Metropolitan United Church (56 Queen Street East) 

Fair: 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. @ McGill Square
Interfaith service: 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. @ MCU
Havdallah: 9:15 p.m.@ McGill Square

The Rainbow Railroad is the theme of this interfaith information fair. Learn about the persecution that LGBTQ communities continue to face in many countries across the globe, their members' struggle to find a safe haven and how we can help. Performances will include the band Snowblink, featuring our own chazzan, Daniela Gesundheit. A youth-led sunset service will be held inside the church, followed by a Havdallah service conducted by our own rabbinic leader, Aviva Goldberg.
 
Shir Libeynu needs a few volunteers for this exciting event.

Panel Discussion with The Aguda
Wednesday June 25 @ 7:30 p.m.
MNjcc (750 Spadina Ave.)

The leadership of The Aguda -- Israel's national LGBTQ task force -- presents a 40-year journey of pride in Israel as well as emerging LGBTQ issues in this complex civil and religious legal landscape.  Presented by Congregation Shir Libeynu, Kulanu Toronto and the MNjcc.


World Pride Parade
Sunday, June 29
Time and location TBA

March with Congregation Shir Libeynu -- one of a number of faith communities coming together as a positive, cohesive presence at World Pride. Stay tuned for details about a float, logos and colours that honour The Rainbow Railroad, which provides support to members of LGBTQ communities facing persecution around the world. We hope our whole congregation -- LGBTQ members and allies alike -- will march together at this once-in-a lifetime World Pride event.
 
Make sure the Shir Libeynu banner flies high. Volunteer to march in the World Pride Parade.

**** 
Congregation Shir Libeynu has been at the forefront in bringing together many Jewish organizations and congregations to ensure that we and other faith communities make World Pride a successful, unifying celebration. Please support our congregation and our city with your presence.
 
A full listing of all World Pride events in the Jewish community can be found here. Information can also be found on the World Pride
website.

 

 SHIR LIBEYNU PARTNERSHIP EVENT 

 

Heart to Heart Community Reception

  Meeting with Participants and Iftar Dinner

 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Noor Cultural Centre 

Meet and Greet: 6:00 p.m.

Reception: 7:45 p.m.

Dinner:  $20/adult

Student/Child fee: TBA

 

Heart to Heart brings a group of Jewish and Palestinian Israeli youth from Israel to a three-week co-existence program hosted by Camp Shomria, a lake-side sleepaway camp in Northern Ontario. The program culminates with a visit to Toronto, including a reception where the participants speak about their experiences. The keynote speaker, Professor Janice Stein, will address the role of personal encounters in conflict management. The evening includes a vegetarian iftar dinner (the evening meal that breaks the daily fast during Ramadan), served at sunset.
 
Because of Congregation Shir Libeynu's strong support for this important  program, our members are all invited to participate in an intimate meet-and-greet
with Heart to Heart participants before the main event. 
 

Registration is required.

 

Can You Help Out At the Heart to Heart Reception?

 

Heart to Heart's community reception is attended by both Muslim and Jewish supporters of the program. Be an active part of this unique event by helping to serve and/or clean up. Contact us about volunteering. High school students can earn community service hours by helping.

 

Sponsorship of Activities

 

There are many activities included in the program's four-day visit to Ottawa and Toronto. Full or partial sponsorship of any of these activities, or of the cost per participant to run the program, would go a long way towards helping make Heart to Heart as amazing as possible! Details can be found on Heart to Heart's Donate page. 

 

 

   

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

Congregation

Shir Libeynu, 

P.O Box 73509

Toronto, Ontario

M6C 4A7

 

Please send an email message to shirlibeynu@yahoo.ca 
 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. 

  
  

 



 


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

Congregation

Shir Libeynu, 

P.O Box 73509

Toronto, Ontario

M6C 4A7

 

Please send an email message to shirlibeynu@yahoo.ca 
 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. 

  
  

 



 


Join Shir Libeynu's 

New Facebook Group   

 

 

 

Join our Facebook group