08/15/2017 10:05:39 PM

It’s been a season and summer of crazy. Issues of parades and flags and race intersecting, and none too comfortably. And then … Charlottesville.

Next week is Pride Week in Ottawa, and I’m sitting with lots of questions:

Continue Reading

                        Ottawa Pride Weekend 2017

Mogen David Pride Flag

OrH has a number of special events planned for this year’s Ottawa Pride Weekend. On Friday, August 25 we are partnering with Temple Israel for a special Kabbalat Shabbat service at 6:15 pm at Temple Israel, 1301 Prince of Wales Dri. Led jointly by Rabbi Morais and Rabbi Liz, we will celebrate our communities’ shared vision of an inclusive, warm and welcoming Jewish community.

On Saturday, August 26, we hold our annual Pride Shabbat August at the pool! Join with Rabbi Liz and special guests for an outdoor camp-style Shabbat at the outdoor pool of the Soloway Jewish Community Centre, 21 Nadolny Sachs Private (indoors in case of inclement weather), beginning at 9:45.

The lively and musical Shabbat morning service will be followed at 10:45 am by a reading of Lawrence Aronovitch’s short play, “The Book of Daniel,” by the author and actors Patrick Teed and Sarah Waisvisz. The “Book of Daniel” takes place in Montreal in 1976. Fourteen-year-old Daniel would rather be dreaming about the summer Olympics or his favorite comic book heroes but his math teacher Mrs. Cohen along with Rabbi Stern are concerned about his studies. His mother, on the other hand, is concerned he is not thinking enough about girls. Following the reading and discussion, we’ll conclude our service and enjoy our usual dairy/pareve potluck. The pool and playground will be available to everyone from 1:00. Please remember to bring folding chairs (or a blanket if you prefer to sit on the ground), and water or other drinks (in reusable bottles if possible).

On Sunday, August 27 members of OrH and fellow congregations will join together to march in Ottawa’s Pride Parade. Meet for brunch at 11:30 am at Jericho restaurant, 840 Bank Street between 4th and 5th in the Glebe, or meet for the parade in front of Centretown United Church, 507 Bank Street at the corner of Argyle, at 1:30 pm. Look for the (award-winning) OrH banner!

Celebrate the High Holy Days at Or Haneshemah

For information about the wide range of services and rituals taking place over the month of Tishrey, including special youth programming, click on the banner above.

         Register Now for 2017-18 Machaneh Shabbat

Or Haneshamah's weekly Machaneh Shabbat for children (ages 4-13)
and their families is now open for registration.

Machaneh Shabbat (Shabbat Camp) is an inclusive, family-based weekly Jewish learning adventure providing an in-depth Jewish education for families with children of all ages. Welcoming the participation of parents, grandparents, and younger siblings, our camp model allows us to explore Torah, prayer, Hebrew and the Jewish year through field trips, drama, art, social action, cooking, building and more! We believe that we can ignite the lifelong spark for Jewish living and learning through community connection and taking the time to live Jewishly especially on Shabbat. This spark is the key to raising engaged and informed Jewish young people!

Visit the Machaneh Shabbat page or contact for more information.

                    Connect with Or Haneshamah

purim 2017

Connect with Or Haneshamah, where you will find...

an open door, open hearts, and open minds; traditional services, meditation, Torah study and chanting; discussions about what matters in our lives, our community, our world, and our planet…

Or Haneshamah, Ottawa’s Reconstructionist Community, brings together more than 100 households to explore and experience Jewish life. Through a partnership between our community leaders, rabbi, and educator, we celebrate Shabbat, festivals, and High Holy Days, and experiment with innovative approaches to enhance learning and deepen our sense of belonging.

Rabbi Elizabeth Bolton is our dynamic spiritual leader who was named by Forward in 2016 as one of North America's most inspiring rabbis. Rabbi Liz leads innovative services, offers creative learning opportunities, works with her counterparts in other congregations on community-wide programs, and provides pastoral support to individuals and families.

OrH members also offer their wisdom, skills, and energy to explore topics related to Jewish living, social issues and to provide support to one another. We offer Machaneh Shabbat Camp (ages 4-13 and their families) and BaMa'Gal (ages 11-13 and their families preparing for a Bar or Bat Mitzvah). Our inclusion of siblings, parents, and grandparents in our educational programs gives families the tools, insights, and inspiration to bring Jewish learning into family life, to reinforce what is learned in our programs. It also supports inter-faith families as parents increase their knowledge and comfort to participate in Jewish life.

Every member contributes their unique tile to our community mosaic. So, drop by, show up, connect, or join us. For more information, contact us at

The Arrival of Our New Sefer Torah!

new sefer torahIn 2016 Or Haneshamah received a gift of a sefer Torah from congregation Kehillat Beth Israel. Read about this and our Hachnasat Sefer Torah celebration here.

Sun, August 20 2017 28 Av 5777