In Hebrew, the wedding ceremony is called “kiddushin,” which means holiness.
We celebrate when two people come together to make a sacred commitment to each other, in front of their family and friends and with the intent to establish a Jewish home. We welcome same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples alike, based on our belief that the holiness of marriage can be present in all loving relationships. We extend this welcome to interfaith couples whose intent is to have a Jewish home, and to raise any children within the Jewish tradition. As part of this commitment, we require that the couple takes a class in Introduction to Judaism, so that both members of the couple have an understanding of Jewish practice and belief. Because our approach is centred on the creation of a Jewish home, we do not co-officiate with clergy of other faiths, and we only officiate at a time when Jewish weddings can be performed (for example, not on Shabbat or Jewish holidays).
Couples can learn more through reading The New Jewish Wedding by Anita Diamant, or Beyond Breaking the Glass, by Rabbi Nancy Weiner. All couples meet with the rabbi in preparation for their wedding, to discuss the ceremony and for pre-marital counselling and conversation. Temple’s beautiful sanctuary and intimate chapel are available, as well as our reception halls, and couples can engage the caterer and other service providers of their choice. We also extend membership to our newlyweds, to help forge a connection with our synagogue community.
We encourage you to be in touch with our Community Engagement Director and to have an initial meeting with our rabbi early in your planning.
Dear Rabbi Grushcow,
Thank you SO MUCH from the bottom of our hearts for being part of our special day and making everything from our first encounter until we smashed the glass as comfortable as possible.
You always made sure we knew you would be there to guide us or to lend an ear any any time before, during and after our ceremony.
Seeing you smiling back at us with every word you spoke and every prayer you sang under the chuppah was so heartfelt. You made what we knew would be a beautiful day feel even more special and warm.
Wishing you a wonderful weekend ahead and an early Shabbat Shalom!
Julie and Brady
Hi Rabbi Grushcow,
I hope all is well with you! Ben and I are settling back into our routines after spending some time with family in Maine.
We were eager to reach out after the wedding, but we wanted to reflect on the day’s events and find time to properly express how much we appreciated you being there.
When Ben and I were planning our wedding day, we anticipated the ceremony being the most meaningful part of our day. We envisioned a ceremony that was true to Jewish tradition, bringing to life the same rituals that our families have performed for generations, while somehow incorporating 11 years of “Ben and Lindsay”. Based on our brief meetings beforehand, Ben and I felt reassured that, as the person tasked with putting all of those pieces together, you would patiently guide us through the process.
Now, the truth is: I don’t remember very much. I was so nervous, that all I could do was lock eyes with you and focus on holding it together. I do remember that it felt like we were taking a “tour” of all the things we discussed, as if everything was coming full-circle: the “story” of me and Ben; the bond we formed as teenagers and nurtured through the years; the importance of trust and respect in fostering an equal partnership now as husband and wife; the meaning of each Jewish tradition and their significance to us. Most importantly, you were crucial in helping me count as I anxiously walked around my perfectly-calm groom.
I’m imagining that everyone thinks their wedding ceremony is special, precisely because it’s their wedding. You should know, however, that literally every person we spoke with afterwards was gushing about how incredible the ceremony was. Some are still gushing! Considering that most of our guests are not Jewish, it was incredible to hear how connected they felt with us and you as you guided everyone through a thoughtful, meaningful and accessible Jewish ceremony. Although a wedding ceremony is not a show or performance, you somehow succeeded in capturing the “audience” while exceeding our expectations for what a “Ben and Lindsay” ceremony could be. Our family and friends, most of whom have known us our whole lives, felt grateful to be part of this milestone, because you made them feel like they were part of it. We emphasized the importance of having a traditional Jewish ceremony, and you carried out our vision in a way that was meaningful and welcoming to non-Jews and Orthodox Jews alike. In Ben’s words: it was a true testament to Reform Judaism.
All of this was thanks to your hard work, patience and guidance, and we really cannot thank you enough.
You were a huge part in what made our day so special, and we’re grateful that you were there to share the experience with us.
We hope you and your family enjoy the rest of the summer and we look forward to seeing you on Rosh Hashanah.
Lindsay and Ben