Sunday, October 25, 2009

I love this job

[This week's Haveil Havalim is here!]

It took me a little while (see here, here and here, for example), but I’m really starting to enjoy my position with the new YU/Torah miTzion Beit Midrash (aka “YU Kollel”) in Toronto.

Leaving the rabbinate is still difficult, but as I write this on the eve of our official “Launch,” and after a Shabbaton with our chevra in Thornhill, I can really say that this is turning out to be both challenging and fun.

Among the highlights:

• The great opportunities to work creatively with community institutions, ranging from the shuls to UJA to JCCs to schools to youth organizations;

• The tremendous chance to do this with my brilliant and energetic co-conspirator, Rabbi Azarya Berzon, our scholar-in-residence;

• The chance to work with four incredible avrechim and our Executive Director, each a unique mind, each talented in a unique way, and yet forming a positive, cohesive group;

• The opportunity to invent new ways to help these fantastic four avrechim develop. We are already doing some remarkable things in this area, such as our "Toronto Torah" עלון and a “You Make the Shiur” project I hope to discuss on this blog soon;

• The ability to spend much of my time in learning and shiur-development;

• The opportunity to work with great shul rabbonim across the spectrum;

• The chance to offer all sorts of shiurim, from minchas chinuch to Tanach to creative Jewish writing, in diverse venues;

• The opportunity to do all of this in Toronto, a cosmopolitan community with some 180,000 Jews of various stripes and flavors, an audience that demands creativity and offers me a great stage on which to try new approaches.

…Not to mention, I get to do all of this while living through Thursdays without the megastress I formerly faced, and I get to be with my children for so much more of Shabbos.

Pretty soon, our new website will be ready is now ready; you can preview it here. I hope you’ll let me know how we could improve it.


  1. I'm so glad! May your job and life continue to be fulfilling. :)

  2. I'm glad, but how's the weather?

  3. I'm happy to see that you're not only settling in but beginning to see the plusses in your new position. It's like driving a car--what you see in the rearview mirror is important but the most important thing is what you see out of the window in front of you.

  4. Jendeis-

    Cold and getting colder...

    Good advice, certainly. Especially important with all of the creative drivers here, too.