Beth Ezekiel Synagogue Owen Sound, Ontario Canada
Shuster – Welcome
Dedicated to the memory of Hyman Shuster by Isabel Shuster
This double window at the synagogue entranceway sends a warm message of welcome to those approaching the synagogue, and offers a blessing of peace as they leave. The window has a special poignancy because Richard Shuster, who lived in Owen Sound for only a short time, was welcomed by the community and he, in return, arranged for his grandmother, Isabel Shuster, to dedicate the window in honour of her husband, Hyman.
In the lefthand panel, the large Shalom , along with the iridescent doves, convey the wish of peace. The lyre represents Hyman’s love and support for music and the arts. On the right panel is a Mezuzah, a protective amulet. On it is the word Almighty , which is inscribed to face visitors as they enter the synagogue from the outside. The banner reads Blessed is the one who enters , a benediction that offers a blessing to all who pass by the window. This is the synagogue’s only window where the central imagery extends beyond the top arch. By doing so, it conveys the idea that our message of welcome, peace, and blessing is unconditional and cannot be contained.