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Our Shivah House Torah

02/01/20 03:34:26 PM

Jan2

 

We are so proud to undertake a special initiative at the Centre to purchase a Torah designed for the purpose of being transported to and from Shiva Houses. In Ethics of our Fathers, it states " The world stands on 3 things: On Torah, on Avodah (Prayer) and on Kindness.” With this Torah being used at a Shiva Service we will be bringing all 3 components together. Please check out the flyers (available on all floors) to learn...Read more...

Confusing the Two

02/01/20 03:33:48 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

As a Rabbi, I hardly ever get "the lie". That means it takes a long time for me to walk to The Kitchen Table to buy flowers for Shabbos. I make the mistake and ask people how they are doing and they actually have the Chutzpah to tell me the truth, instead of "the lie". I get home two minutes before Shabbos and the best thing I can do is turn my depressed cut flowers into potpourri. However, these interactions do give me an...Read more...

Kollel Boker

02/01/20 03:33:07 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

This Thursday we started up our early bird learning program. We had over 15 men join the Talmud and Mishnah class. Many of the participants voiced their hesitation about the program the days leading up to yesterday. I told them, just come once. Often the biggest obstacle to doing something great is the thought of doing it. If we commit to doing it just once, repeating it becomes easier and it can get to the point of becoming...Read more...

Thank You Chabad

02/01/20 03:32:26 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

So there we are, my sons Binyamin, Shlomo and I, standing inside the Chabad shul in Niagara, the first morning of their short mid-winter break. Realistically, the only way we are davening with a minyan is if the shul pulls it off. We arrive at 7:15 and find only the Rabbi's son with his tefillin bag. At 7:45 the Rabbi pulls in. He normally drives to Buffalo or Hamilton daily to catch a minyan. Today he is actually driving in...Read more...

What Our Belly Needs

02/01/20 03:31:45 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

Coming back from Israel I can tell you one thing for sure: our bellies do not need the all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet in the kosher hotels in Jerusalem. So what does our belly need? The first time G-d gave the 10 Commandments it was with pomp and circumstance. The result was the sin of the Golden Calf. The second set of tablets were delivered more modestly, and those tablets lasted forever. If the rule is that things that...Read more...

Nachas

02/01/20 03:31:41 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

Monday night, as the snow was carpeting our city and visibility was down to 3 inches, I WhatsApped our Maariv group. Shlomo and I needed 8 more for a Minyan and wondered if there were any crazies out there that would join us. Baruch Hashem we have lots of crazies at our Centre, and we made the Minyan without a problem. I once heard that the Jewish people are compared to salmon. While most fish travel downstream, salmon travel...Read more...

The View From Above

02/01/20 03:30:21 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Mordechai Bookbinder

 

Tu Bishvat – New Year’s for the Trees… Mazel Tov? Isn’t it a little strange…? Since when do trees celebrate holidays, let alone their own New Year’s Day? Tu Bishvat is actually discussed in the Talmud, where it’s recognized that after four months of rain saturating the soil, the trees start to “reawaken,” and the sap begins to flow back up the tree in order to produce fruit. Thus, it’s their New Year’s Day...Read more...

My Greatest Challenge

02/01/20 03:29:46 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

The truth is that I have many challenges. That’s why we were put on planet Earth, for Hashem to test us so we can stretch ourselves and become the best version of us. I have many challenges. I procrastinate, I am lazy and I love food…way too much. Sometimes I am petty, but not as petty as you. And sometimes, my Hungarian DNA comes to the fore and I may get a tad angry. However, doing my Judaism by rote is amazingly my...Read more...

Chaver: Friend

02/01/20 03:29:08 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

This past Wed, Rifky and I were driving to NY to participate in my grandmothers memorial Shloshim meal. Somewhere between Syracuse and Marathon NY a car pulled up parallel to us with mad people and arms flailing. Before I called 911 and said Shema I noticed that these people were none other than Shifra and Elisha Greenberg. How cute it was to be six hours away from 362 Spadina Road and be driving side by side with my neighbours...Read more...

Thank You Yidel

02/01/20 03:28:29 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

At Sheva Brachot for Ben and Aliza Welkovics, I was schmoozing with my dear friend Yidel Fischer. He shared a beautiful idea that I would like to share with you. At the burning bush there was fire, yet the bush was not consumed. In this context, fire is a metaphor for Torah. While the Torah has the power to refine, purify and warm us, its job is not to consume our identity and turn us into mindless robots. The Hebrew word...Read more...

Dear Amazing FHJC

02/01/20 03:28:26 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

I wanted to wish you all a nice break, and hope you can relax a little bit over the next few weeks. Recently we have seen three new staff members join our ranks. Our Executive Director Mordechai, has already become one of our elder statesmen. Nancy, with really helpful assistance from Michelle, has transitioned nicely to the office administrator, aka "responsible for everything" job, and now that Faige is married and living in...Read more...

Thank You Dr. Mark Simon

02/01/20 03:28:22 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

Dear Mark, When Arthur Zilbert called to tell me that you had purchased the Torahs from Glace Bay, I was elated. We had discussed that one of the Torahs would find her way into our Aron Kodesh. Being that my first posi0on as a Rabbi was at Beth Zion in Oshawa, I had an inkling of the magic of a small town Jewish community. However, not all small towns are created equal. A collec0on of dedicated, knowledgeable, and selfless...Read more...

Chanukah and The Daughter of Pharoah

02/01/20 03:28:19 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

When the daughter of Pharaoh saw Moshe in the basket, our commentators say that she stretched out her hand and miraculously her had reached the basket which was very far away. She did what she could and Hashem took care of the rest. When the Maccabees lit the Menorah on the first day in the Temple they knew the Menorah would once again go dark for many days; yet, they did what they could and Hashem did the rest. My friends,...Read more...

The Pintelah Yid and Chanukah

02/01/20 03:28:15 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

Why do I love Chanukah? It is because the battle of the Maccabi’s was not just a battle against the Greeks, but it was something much greater. At the time of Chanukah, as in our times, the real battle taking place was over the soul of every Jew. Who we were and how we defined ourselves in relation to our Host culture. This is actually a never ending battle. During the time of the Maccabees our Jewish souls won. We won because...Read more...

Introducing Nancy Klein

02/01/20 03:28:12 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

I am so excited to introduce all of you to Nancy Klein. She is our newest member of the staff and part of the Centre family. I have always wanted to have a ‘Winnipeger’ on board and the dream has been realized! Next, we hope to hire someone from Atlantic Canada....stay tuned. Here is a bio on Nancy, enjoy! Before joining us, Nancy gained over 10 years of experience as an Administrator and Director of Admissions in the...Read more...

Sister Cecylia Roszak

02/01/20 03:28:09 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

If we are going to take to task all the non-Jewish neighbours who allowed the Holocaust to happen, then likewise we need to publically praise and thank those few righteous among the nations who risked their lives to save us. It is in this vain that we acknowledge the passing of Sister Cecylia Roszak, a Polish nun who was believed to be the oldest nun in the world, and was recognized as a rescuer of Jews during the Holocaust....Read more...

No Words

02/01/20 03:28:06 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie Karfunkel

 

I have no words to describe what an amazing week we just had at the Centre. Our visiting scholar-in-residence, Rabbi Tatz, over the course of a week, lectured to over 2000 people with many hearing Rabbi Tatz speak more than one time. Right before Shabbat, I sent out a video encouraging everyone to come to the Centre to be inspired by Rabbi Tatz and to show solidarity with our fellow brothers and sisters in Pittsburgh. I have no...Read more...

Light For Emily

02/01/20 03:28:02 PM

Jan2

Rabbi Elie and Rifky Karfunkel

 

Emily is a beautiful, courageous young 4year old girl in our community. She needs our prayers and our good thoughts for a complete recovery. As Emily's family waits 3 weeks for her next scan, let’s add mitzvot to the world in her merit. For the next 3 weeks, please try to: 1. Light Shabbat candles on time, or if that is something you already do, light 5 minutes early. 2. Make Havdala at the conclusion of Shabbat using wine...Read more...

Sun, April 5 2020 11 Nisan 5780