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DN: The Early Years - Reflections from Danny Schild

03/04/2018 01:02:44 PM

Apr3

My interest in Reconstructionism began in the 1960’s when I was a university student and I subscribed to the Reconstructionist magazine which, believe it or not, was published in print form and mailed twice a month. As a result of my subscription I received a letter from Rabbi Lavy Becker of the Reconstructionist synagogue in Montreal late in 1971 inviting me to a meeting of Toronto people who might be interested in forming a synagogue in Toronto.

I attended and quickly found myself at the centre of his organizational efforts. Lavy regularly travelled to Toronto on non-Rabbinical business and stayed at the Royal York, and as I was working in the TD Centre he would invite me to lunch and would give me responsibilities and lessons on organizing a new synagogue.

By the spring of 1972, we were anxious to get going with High Holiday services, but Lavy told us we needed more time and we should wait until the fall for our first service. We were disappointed but we knew Lavy was giving us good advice.

So, after months of planning and publicity, we held our first service at the Borochov Centre just a few blocks north of the current shul. The morning was a blur, but I do recall that the attendance was good, Lavy led the service, and I brought the Kiddush wine which I placed on the window sill to keep cool.

I don’t think I ever envisioned that 43 years later our little group would become a significant part of the Toronto Jewish community. 

Wed, 16 June 2021 6 Tammuz 5781