Rabbi Lori Cohen

“Baruchim HaBaim”, these Hebrew words are translated as, “Blessed are you who have come”, or in colloquial English, “Welcome – come on in!”. At Temple Shalom these words are always on our lips and in our hearts. We feel blessed by those who come in through our door. Our prayer is that when you enter you will feel as if you have come home.

Temple Shalom is a congregation that believes in a positive Judaism – one which encourages life-long learning, inspires a love of our tradition through ritual, creates a sacred community through prayer, works towards social justice and encourages strong relationships with people of all faiths.

We encourage you to come and meet us.

Rabbi Lori Cohen

Why I Want to Be Your Rabbi

I am thrilled to be the rabbi of Temple Shalom. I may physically live in Toronto, but my spiritual self resides in Waterloo with you! Here’s my reasons why Temple Shalom is such a special place…

We have amazing musicians who breathe life into all our services with their expertise and passion. We have pianists, violinists, guitar players and flutists as well as so many beautiful voices!

We have many lay leaders who bring their own minhagim which gives us varied and interesting Shabbat services.

We have a religious school that children want to attend with dedicated teachers. Our students learn as much in 3 hours a week as many children in bigger centres learn in 3 days a week.

We celebrate our B’nei Mitzvah with each of them comfortably standing on the bimah and leading most of the service.

We have a young and committed Board that is able to check egos at the door and truly work for the benefit of the whole congregation.

We have a diverse congregation of people of different ages, races and genders and all are made to feel welcome.

As part of the Cedars and sharing our building with Westminster United Church, we are able to live and model how faith communities can truly work together for the benefit of all.

We have a congregation of academic people who bring expertise in so many areas of scholarship that our discussions and study groups are always stimulating and challenging.

We have warm and inviting High Holy Day services where many people can participate and get involved.

We have amazing Shabbat and holiday dinners as a community.

We have a community garden that helps to meet the needs of university students living with food insecurity.

We are “hamish”….no one is afraid to roll up their sleeves to do the dishes, move furniture and create a warm atmosphere for all.

We practice and live a Judaism that is thoughtful, inclusive, academic and ethical.

Thank you for putting your faith in me!

Rabbi Lori

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