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Over the winter of 2021, Rabbi Shuchat’s file cabinets were brought out of storage and slowly the task of sifting through Rabbi Herman Abramowitz and Rabbi Wilfred Shuchat files began. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, I worked alone, passionate about preserving the Shaar’s rich history, however I quickly realized that this project would require a professional archivist. As restrictions eased and with the support of a Canada Summer Jobs, we were delighted to welcome Hannah Srour,  a recent graduate of the Master of Information program at the University of Toronto, where she concentrated in Archives & Library Science. 


Since joining the Shaar at the end of June, she along with my guidance and the volunteer help of Aviya Scheier and Kinneret Finegold  have uncovered many exciting finds among Rabbi Shuchat's papers, including personal letters from Abraham Heschel, A. M. Klein, and Chaim Potok, records about Leonard Cohen's youth involvement at the synagogue, and various materials related to the Pavilion of Judaism at Expo '67 to name but a few.


Follow us in the Shaar’s enewsletter as we continue to share our discoveries and ask for your help in piecing together more of our Shaar’s history. 


Claire Berger -


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Sunday, July 14, 2024 8 Tammuz 5784