We, Michael Cole and Howard Roger, are two members of Holy Blossom Temple. This blog records our observations, experiences and questions as we study a cache of manuscripts of the sermons of Rabbi Maurice Eisendrath, rabbi of our synagogue from 1929 to 1943.
The sermons of Rabbi Eisendrath which give this blog its name were found in “the tower”, a seldom visited area of the synagogue building inhabited by Holy Blossom Temple in Toronto, Canada. Unheated, dimly lit and accessible only by a staircase too narrow to allow more than one person ascending or descending at a time, the tower was a place where old accounting records and administrative papers were deposited and forgotten.
In January 2006, volunteers from the Temple Brotherhood, our men’s club, undertook a clean up and discovered a collection of manuscripts. They were set aside, together with some scrapbooks that were found, and given to the Archives
committee for examination.
In total, 189 sermons written by Rabbi Eisendrath were found. (There were also a few sermons written by his predecessor at Holy Blossom, Rabbi Ferdinand Isserman.) Most of the sermons are in Rabbi Eisendrath’s own handwriting; a few are typewritten. Some were written by him while he was a rabbi in West Virginia before coming to Toronto. Most are complete sermons, but a few are missing pages or are outlines.