Programs - Makom

Weekly Wisdom: Torah for Personal Growth

Torah scroll text and pointer
Tuesdays, April 6 – May 11
8-9pm

Free – donations greatly appreciated!
Registration Required
Zoom link sent upon registration

In preparation for receiving the Torah on Shavuot, let’s work on improving ourselves through ethical and spiritual growth.

Each week, we’ll focus on one piece of the parashah (weekly Torah portion) and through text study and open discussion, we’ll discover positive messages in it that we can apply to our lives.

Everyone is welcome!
No commitment; come when you can.
No prior Jewish study or Hebrew knowledge required.
Automatic Closed Captioning.

Outdoor Friday Night Sukkot Services

people praying in a park

Fri, September 24
6:30-7:30pm

Outdoors & In-Person near Bloor & Bathurst
Exact location provided upon registration
Registration Required
Limited Space
Free – donations greatly appreciated!
(If raining at 5pm or later, services will be cancelled.)

Now that Toronto’s public health situation has markedly improved, we’re enjoying our in-person, outdoor services! Please register now to join us for soulful and song-filled singing to wind down from the week and welcome Shabbat in warm community.

For everyone’s safety, we are following Toronto Public Health’s updated Guidance for Places of Worship, which requires that we maintain physical distancing, but does not require masks outdoors so long as physical distancing is maintained. If you feel unwell or have any COVID-19 symptoms, you must stay home.

Seating will be physically distant and there will be separate sections for women’s, men’s, and mixed (all genders) seating, from which you can choose when you register. Since we’ll be outdoors and not in a regular prayer space, there won’t be curtains between these sections.

Children are welcome if they can sit next to their parent for the full duration of services and maintain physical distancing from all others. Children must be registered as well.

Please note that washrooms will not be available.

Register Now!

Beyond the Torah: Jeremiah

Detail of Michelangel's painting of Jeremiah on the Sistine Chapel ceiling
Mondays, Aug 9-30
10am-12pm

Online via Zoom
$100 for 4 sessions 
Registration Required

The Biblical book of Yirmiyahu/Jeremiah is a collection of powerful, poetic speeches by this prophet of the seventh and sixth centuries BCE. He lived through the Babylonian conquest of the kingdom of Judah, destruction of Jerusalem, and exile of the Jewish people, which led him to challenge both his own people and God in emotional outpourings.

Join us online to learn and discuss a chapter or two each week from a great variety of perspectives: ancient and modern, traditional and academic, literary and historical, etc.

No prior Jewish study or Hebrew knowledge required. 
Contact Rabbi Aaron for more info and to register.

Outdoor In-Person Friday Night Services

people praying in a park

Fri, August 13
7-8:15pm

Outdoors & In-Person near Bloor & Bathurst
Exact location provided upon registration
Registration Required
Limited Space
Free – donations greatly appreciated!
(If raining at 5pm or later, services will be services will be online.)

Now that Toronto’s public health situation has markedly improved, we’re enjoying our in-person, outdoor services! Please register now to join us for soulful and song-filled singing to wind down from the week and welcome Shabbat in warm community.

For everyone’s safety, we are following Toronto Public Health’s updated Guidance for Places of Worship, which requires that we maintain physical distancing, but does not require masks outdoors so long as physical distancing is maintained. If you feel unwell or have any COVID-19 symptoms, you must stay home.

Seating will be physically distant and there will be separate sections for women’s, men’s, and mixed (all genders) seating, from which you can choose when you register. Since we’ll be outdoors and not in a regular prayer space, there won’t be curtains between these sections.

Children are welcome if they can sit next to their parent for the full duration of services and maintain physical distancing from all others. Children must be registered as well.

Please note that washrooms will not be available.

Register Now!

Weekly Wisdom: Torah for Personal Growth – Elul Edition

Torah scroll text and pointer

Tuesdays, Aug 10-31
8-9pm

Free – donations greatly appreciated!

Registration Required


Zoom link sent upon registration
(Sign up once for the whole series; no need to register each week.)
Automatic Closed Captioning

During the month of Elul, leading up to Rosh Hashanah, it’s traditional to work more conscientiously on improving ourselves through ethical and spiritual growth.

Each week, we’ll focus on one piece of the parashah (weekly Torah portion) and through text study and open discussion, we’ll discover positive messages in it that we can apply to our lives.

Everyone is welcome!
No commitment; come when you can.
No prior Jewish study or Hebrew knowledge required.

Register Now

Outdoor In-Person Friday Night Services

people praying in a park

Fri, July 30
7-8pm

Outdoors & In-Person near Bloor & Bathurst
Exact location provided upon registration
Registration Required
Limited Space
Free – donations greatly appreciated!
(If raining at 5pm or later, services will be services will be online.)

Now that Toronto’s public health situation has markedly improved, we’re enjoying our in-person, outdoor services! Please register now to join us for soulful and song-filled singing to wind down from the week and welcome Shabbat in warm community.

For everyone’s safety, we are following Toronto Public Health’s updated Guidance for Places of Worship, which requires that we maintain physical distancing, but does not require masks outdoors so long as physical distancing is maintained. If you feel unwell or have any COVID-19 symptoms, you must stay home.

Seating will be physically distant and there will be separate sections for women’s, men’s, and mixed (all genders) seating, from which you can choose when you register. Since we’ll be outdoors and not in a regular prayer space, there won’t be curtains between these sections.

Children are welcome if they can sit next to their parent for the full duration of services and maintain physical distancing from all others. Children must be registered as well.

Please note that washrooms will not be available.

Register Now!

Tishah be-Av Eve, Outdoors & In Person

Hands holding open Hebrew book with lit candle
Sat, July 17
10:15-11:30pm

Outdoors & In-Person near Bloor & Christie
Exact location provided upon registration
Registration Required
Limited Space
Free – donations greatly appreciated!
Rain or Shine (we have shelter)

Please join us for a powerful, contemplative evening marking historical Jewish loss and ongoing brokenness in the world as we usher in Tishah be-Av, the ninth day of the lunar month of Av.This date marks the destruction of the Temples in Jerusalem and other tragedies in Jewish history. It is traditionally observed with fasting, refraining from wearing leather, and other mourning customs. (For more background, see here.)

We’ll pray the brief evening service and listen to the Biblical book of Eikhah/Lamentations, hauntingly chanted by community members. We’ll also sing some songs, kinnot (elegies), and niggunim (wordless melodies).

For everyone’s safety, we are following Toronto Public Health’s updated Guidance for Places of Worship, which requires that we maintain physical distancing, but does not require masks outdoors so long as physical distancing is maintained. If you feel unwell or have any COVID-19 symptoms, you must stay home.

Please bring:

  • Flashlight
  • Blanket, cushion, or chair for sitting (it’s customary to sit low to the ground for Eikhah)
  • Cash to donate toward feeding the hungry, in keeping with the spirit of Isaiah 58:6-7, “This is the fast I desire… It is to share your bread with the hungry.”
  • Kippah/head covering (if you wear one during services)
  • Mask (optional)

Please note that washrooms will not be available.

Seating will be physically distant and there will be separate sections for women’s, men’s, and mixed (all genders) seating, from which you can choose when you register. Since we’ll be outdoors and not in a regular prayer space, there won’t be curtains between these sections.

FYI, the fast begins Sat at sunset,8:55pm, and ends Sun at nightfall, 9:32pm.

Register Now

Outdoor In-Person Friday Night Services

people praying in a park
Fri, July 16
7-8pm

Outdoors & In-Person near Bloor & Bathurst
Exact location provided upon registration
Registration Required
Limited Space
Free – donations greatly appreciated!
(If raining at 5pm or later, services will be services will be online.)

Now that Toronto’s public health situation has markedly improved, we’re excited for our first in-person, outdoor services since last Nov! Please register now to join us for soulful and song-filled singing to wind down from the week and welcome Shabbat in warm community.

For everyone’s safety, we are following Toronto Public Health’s updated Guidance for Places of Worship, which requires that we maintain physical distancing, but does not require masks outdoors so long as physical distancing is maintained. If you feel unwell or have any COVID-19 symptoms, you must stay home.

Seating will be physically distant and there will be separate sections for women’s, men’s, and mixed (all genders) seating, from which you can choose when you register. Since we’ll be outdoors and not in a regular prayer space, there won’t be curtains between these sections.

Children are welcome if they can sit next to their parent for the full duration of services and maintain physical distancing from all others. Children must be registered as well.

Please note that washrooms will not be available.

Register Now

neyShev: Foundations of Jewish Mindfulness

Person holding her hands over her heart
4 Mondays, July 5-26
8:00-8:30pm

(No Fri morning sits in July)
Online via Zoom
Meeting ID: 938 2581 9683 | Passcode: 402402

For the month of July, Ari Kaplan will teach a four-part, 30-minute series on foundations of mindfulness, which will cover mindfulness of breath, body, thought, and emotion.

No prior experience in mindfulness is necessary. A familiarity with Jewish concepts is helpful but not necessary.

Ari Kaplan is a lawyer, mediator, and president of Makom. He is an instructor-in-training with the Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Certification Program at UC Berkeley. Ari has practiced mindfulness for over a decade, is trained in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, and has taught meditation sessions for the Ontario Bar Association and professional communities. He has a masters degree in law from Osgoode Hall and a B.A. in Jewish Studies from McGill University, where he studied hasidism. Ari is an original participant in Aviva Chernick’s neyShev meditation circle.

Pay What You Can – all are welcome no matter your financial situation
($10 minimum recommended)
Canadians: E-transfer to chernick.aviva@gmail.com
Outside of Canada: Pay by Paypal

If this is your first time joining neyShev, please subscribe to the neyShev newsletter.

Please log on a few minutes early to settle in, set up your space, and ensure that your video and audio are working properly.

Fri Night Services Online

Shabbat shalom and flowers

Fri, July 2
7-7:45pm

Online via Zoom
Meeting ID: 955 4183 9308, Password: 024117
Free – donations greatly appreciated!

We’ll wind down from the week and welcome Shabbat by singing the joyous melodies of Kabbalat Shabbat together as a community and hearing a brief devar Torah.

Just before bringing in Shabbat with the final stanza of Lekha Dodi, we’ll bid each other Shabbat shalom and log off to light candles and start Shabbat the good ol’ unplugged way.

Have your Shabbat candles ready to light. If you have a siddur (prayer book), please use it; we’ll also screen share the prayers.

Fri Night Services

Shabbat shalom and flowers
Fri, June 4
7-7:45pm

Online via Zoom
Meeting ID: 955 4183 9308, Password: 024117
Free – donations greatly appreciated!

We’ll wind down from the week and welcome Shabbat by singing the joyous melodies of Kabbalat Shabbat together as a community and hearing a brief devar Torah.

Just before bringing in Shabbat with the final stanza of Lekha Dodi, we’ll bid each other Shabbat shalom and log off to light candles and start Shabbat the good ol’ unplugged way.

Have your Shabbat candles ready to light. If you have a siddur (prayer book), please use it; we’ll also screen share the prayers.