A surprise evening to thank our past House Chair for his dedication
What can possibly be said about a man who has made such a wonderful difference in the community, and in so many people’s lives?
There was no shortage of praise for Lorne Goldstein at his Surprise Thank You party on November 24th. The House honoured our past Chair with the friends, family and community members he’s touched over the years in his unwavering determination to give back.
Current House Co-Chairs Beth Singer and Elliott Levine presented him a plaque which quoted the Talmud, “Don’t read children, read builders.” They expressed gratitude for having received his guidance, and shared their commitment to continue his work with The House, Lorne’s self-proclaimed “labour of love.”
Elliott remarked that it was Lorne’s vision which helped steer the organization from just the seeds of an idea to reaching the “amazing level” it has achieved today (engaging over 2,000 young professionals, annually). Yet his longstanding friend, Morris Perlis, expressed Lorne’s particular strength for acting on his passion — and his convictions — to make things happen. He has the “ability to bring a great team around him, listen to what has to get done, and forge through.”
And what Lorne has helped do is beyond words. Thankfully, the night said it best with emotion.
Along with his plaque, Lorne was presented with The House’s first Mezuzah, part of the organization’s latest initiative to recognize young professionals who show ongoing commitment to Jewish values.
A fundamental cornerstone of the Jewish home, the mezuzah is choice symbol for a project that will congratulate dedicated House participants on important milestones: as they get married, move into a new home, and go on to lead Jewish lives.
The cases are specially-designed to resemble a “house,” a beautiful analogy for the organization which helped recipients’ Jewish identity take root; and because the most important part of a mezuzah is the prayer scroll inside, they perfectly echo the Jewish adage Rabbi Rafi widely regards as The House’s mandate, and support for Jewish education: “it’s what’s happening inside one’s home that’s most important.”
Rabbi Rafi spoke of Lorne as the most fitting person to accept the first mezuzah, given all that he’s done to help build such an inclusive Jewish space. “Every house that we strengthen is really the strength of the future Jewish community.”
“Make for yourself a Rabbi, and acquire for yourself a friend.”
This pearl of wisdom from Pirkei Avot (Ethics of our Fathers) aptly describes the bond House Founder Rabbi Rafi Lipner & former Chair Lorne Goldstein share. It also represents the precedence both men have set for the young professionals they inspire in building The House.
Each person can find a teacher in another. The House wants participants to develop an appreciation of Jewish values with those whom they can rely on for guidance, motivation and friendship — because sharing a vision pushes it even closer towards becoming reality.