Makom: Creative Downtown Judaism is a grassroots Toronto community fusing Jewish tradition and progressive values since 2009.
Through joyous spirituality, stimulating learning, and arts and culture programming, Makom creates inclusive space that inspires participants – diverse in religious affiliation, age, sexual orientation, and gender identity – to explore together how Judaism can meaningfully enrich our lives.
Makom’s programming includes soulful and song-filled Friday night and holiday services, Jewish meditation, adult education classes, family activities, and arts and culture experiences. Makom Afterschool is an innovative, pluralistic, Hebrew-immersion and Jewish studies program for children in JK through Grade 4, now offered in three downtown neighbourhoods. Makom ATID is our innovative approach to serious Jewish and Hebrew learning and preparation for Bar/Bat Mitzvah for students in grades 5-8.
We can’t provide meaningful Jewish experiences without your support. Please give generously so we can keep enriching your life with spirituality, learning and culture.
Sweet, Soulful + Song-Filled High Holiday Services
Join us for Makom’s amazing Rosh Hashanah (Sept 10-11) and Yom Kippur (Sept 18-19) services, family services, childcare, and chanting!
(High Holiday ticket sales help cover the costs of putting on High Holiday services and are fully tax deductible. We don’t want anyone to be unable to attend services due to financial constraints. We offer student/low income tickets; if you need additional financial consideration, please contact Rabbi Aaron in confidence. All are welcome!)
Makom is an inclusive community that welcomes participants who espouse many different approaches to Judaism, from secular to religiously liberal to traditionally observant. In order to join together as one community without regard to denominational labels, our main services blend traditional and progressive practices. We’ll offer men’s, women’s, and mixed-seating sections in our main services; children are welcome in all sections. Both men and women will participate in leading services, reading Torah and haftarah, and being called up for aliyot to the Torah. Family Services are egalitarian with mixed seating.
Services will be led by Rabbi Aaron and special guest prayer leaders, whom we’ll announce soon.
We’re looking forward to an incredible start of 5779 together with you!
Co-presented with Kulanu Toronto and Moishe House Toronto
Makom Afterschool & ATID is HIRING:
Open Position: Teaching Assistant
Open Position: Hebrew Immersion Teacher
Open Position: Hebrew Teacher
Open Position: T’Fillah & Torah Trope Teacher
WELCOME, Sarah + Sorel!
Sarah Livingston, Director of Family Programming and Afterschool Operations
Sarah is an experienced educator and administrator both within and outside the Jewish community. She holds a Master’s in Canadian Jewish Food History and Bachelor’s degrees in Russian Jewish History and Jewish Studies. Originally from Las Vegas, Nevada, Sarah lives in the East End with her husband Rob, two boys Gavi and Rafi, and their kitty Nermal. She looks forward to meeting you at Makom Families programs. Email Sarah your welcome!
Sorel Goldberg Loeb, Director of Curriculum and Staff Development
Sorel is passionate about teaching Hebrew and Judaism and supporting teachers in their work. She worked with children, families, and teachers of all ages and stages for over twenty years as the Director of Education at Westchester Reform Temple in Scarsdale, New York. She is the author of the teacher resource book Teaching Torah – A Treasury of Insights and Activities. Sorel returned to her hometown of Toronto in 2016 and is excited to be joining the Makom community. Email Sorel your welcome!
Friday Night SERVICES + DINNER
Friday Aug 24
6:45pm – Doors Open; 7pm – Services Start
Services @ Makom – 402 College St
Celebrate Shabbat with spirit! Wind down from the week and welcome Shabbat with soulful, song-filled services, in which everyone can participate. After services, we’ll enjoy a delicious, catered vegan Shabbat dinner together. Very limited space; register now.
SHABBAT in the PARK
Saturday Aug 25
@ Vermont Square Park
Bring Your Own Picnic Dinner
4:30 Kids play in the park and splash pad
5:15 Shabbat activities for kids & adults:
6:00 Bring a picnic blanket and dinner for yourself/your family. We’ll provide dessert.
** In the event of rain, the program is cancelled. **
Presented in partnership with Miles Nadal JCC
FENTSTER presents: Every Thread that Binds You
May 28 – Oct 4, 2018
@ Makom – 402 College St
Inverting the renowned Jewish exorcism story of The Dybbuk, painted and sculpted figures stitch protective layers onto their own skin.
Multidisciplinary artist Jess Riva Cooper has a long-held interest in mystical characters of Jewish folklore. The notion of the evil spirit of the Dybbuk which enters a living person intertwines with Cooper’s ongoing exploration of parasitic, invading plant life. Noted writer and ethnographer S. An-ski (1863–1920) popularized the lore of the malevolent spirit in the renowned early 20th century Yiddish play: Der dibek: Tsvishn tsvey veltn (“The Dybbuk: Between Two Worlds”). The story centres on Leah – possessed on her wedding day by the tortured, wronged soul of her true beloved, Khonen, who died suddenly upon learning of her impending matrimony to another.
In this exhibition, the artist interprets the famed fantastical tale through a woman’s view, considering how Leah does not possess control over her destiny within a devout, patriarchal world order. The exhibition title is extracted from a climactic moment in the script; the Rabbi commands the Dybbuk to sever “every thread that binds you to the living world and to the body and soul of the maiden.” The world An-ski describes demands separation; cutting from the unknown. Integrating large-scale drawings and ceramic sculptures, Cooper takes up the metaphor of connective threads in a generative way. She transforms women’s idealized domestic work of sewing and mending into an otherworldly gesture equal to An-ski’s drama. Sewers stitch protective garments onto their clothing and even their own skin, attaching to themselves benevolent shadow-beings that only appear foreboding. Here the act of creation is one of salvation, returning power to the hands of women.
Presented together with the Ashkenaz Festival