Sarah & Ella Bookman are B’nei Mitzvah!

Saturday July 30Ann and Aron Bookman are pleased to invite you to celebrate the Bat Mitzvah x2 of their wonderful daughters, Sarah and Ella, on Shabbat Matot-Mas’ey, Saturday July 30, 10:00AM to 1:00PM. If you are not comfortable with a larger than usual gathering in the Sanctuary, please join us on Zoom. We look forward to seeing you!

Summary of event details

  • Date: July 30, 2022
  • Time: 10:00AM – 1:00PM
  • Where: Sanctuary & Social Hall, Zoom

Public Menorah Lighting: The Light of Tzedakah, Righteous Giving

In Honour of Reverend Al Tysick

On December 5th, a Public Menorah Lighting was held at Centennial Square. It was a wonderful evening filled with spirit and celebration – in essence a glorious Hanukkah street party! This year’s theme was the Light of Tzedakah, of Righteous Giving. 

It was our privilege to honour Reverend Al Tysick, a person who powerfully exemplifies Tzedakah via his words and deeds. Rabbi Harry spoke of how Rev. Al has brought light, hope and comfort to members of Victoria’s street and vulnerable community for many decades.  

A giant Hanukkah menorah (hanukkiah) was lit for the eighth night of the Jewish Festival of Lights.  The musical headliner was none other than the fabulous klezmer group, The Yiddish Columbia State Orchestra.  They belted out klezmer songs, Hanukkah tunes, and much more to get the audience fired up. The many attendees were singing, dancing, and simply sharing their joy and gratitude about being able to celebrate Hanukkah in person for the first time in two years.

The Avodah Social Action team collected non-perishable food and cash donations to support the food bank at St. John the Divine. Thanks go out to the Downtown Victoria Business Association for their support, and to the many others who made this an enchanted evening to remember!  

Please see photos attached, and a link to an article in the Times Colonist below.

from the Religious Services Committee

Jade Sylvia Fisher-Marshall is Bat Mitzvah

Saturday, September 11, 2021 10 am–noonRachel Fisher and Grant Marshall invite the congregation to join us in celebrating the bat mitzvah of our daughter, Jade Sylvia, on Saturday, September 11, 2021. Seats are limited so reserve ahead, or join us on Zoom.

To accommodate Jade’s family and friends, please note that there will be very few spaces available for community attendance. Simply notifying the office will not guarantee that you have a space. You must receive confirmation of registration. Thank you for your understanding. Please send Jade your good wishes!

Back to Shul Picnic

Please join Congregation Emanu-El for a Back to Shul picnic on Sunday August 22, 12pm – 3pm!

Back to Shul Picnic Poster

Come join us for vegetarian kosher dairy boxed lunches, schmoozing, music by the Klezbians, games for kids, and lots of conversation. Please bring a chair or blanket to sit on and plates and cutlery.

For location information please contact the office:

Rides will be available for those who need them—to arrange, please call the office at 250-382-0615 before 3:00 PM August 19.

Happy Birthday, Adele!

Adele Vernon was born with a gift. She is one of those remarkable people who bring joy into the lives of the rest of us. “If I have a gift for the world,” she said, “I think it might be having fun and sharing that with others.” Adele is turning 90, and if you give her a phone call, you’ll soon be smiling, maybe laughing. It’s uplifting to be around her. Even the sound of her voice lifts you up. Rabbi Harry says, “Adele embodies what the tradition calls ‘having a good eye’; she is a ‘ba’alat tov ayin’. She sees the good in others and encourages and nurtures that good.”

We asked Adele to tell her story about life with Congregation Emanu-El. She is a woman of many talents! Afterwards, some of her friends share a few stories about Adele. Happy Birthday, Dear Adele. May you continue to thrive and to scatter your beauty across this world. 

Continue reading Happy Birthday, Adele!

Simcha Gift Shop Celebrates Ḥanukkah!

Weeks December 4 & 11, Monday to Thursday 9:30 am–2:30 pm —Simcha Visit Simcha Gift Shop for Ḥanukkah candles, Ḥanukkiot, and gifts. Choose from a wide selection of gifts created by members of the congregation including books, prints, mezuzot and CDs and unique one-of-a-kind pieces of silver jewellery created by a local jeweller (who also sells to museums) are now available at Simcha.
The gift shop is located at Congregation Emanu-El synagogue at the southern end of the Social Hall. During the weeks of December 4 and 11, Simcha is open Monday to Thursday 9:30 am–2:30 pm. 

Shop at Simcha Gift Shop for Sukkot

P1050250The Simcha Gift Shop at Congregation Emanu-El has kippot, tallitot, mapot and many other Judaica items. The gift shop is located at Congregation Emanu-El at the southern end of the Social Hall.
You may shop during office hours: Tues-Thurs 9:30-2:30 or by appointment by email. We accept cash, cheques, and credit cards. Come check us out!

About the Lulav and Etrog

It is ordained in Leviticus 23:40: “On the first day (of Sukkot) you shall take the product of hadar (goodly) trees, branches of palm trees, boughs of leafy trees, and willows of the brook, and you shall rejoice before the Lord your God seven days.”

These Arbah Minim (‘Four Species’) are 4 plant species which are used ritually as part of the observance of the festival of Sukkot. Three of the species (the palm, willow and myrtle) are placed in a special plaited holder and collectively are known as a lulav; the fourth of the species, the fruit of the citron tree which is known in Hebrew as an etrog, is held together with the lulav.

It is a mitzvah (commandment) to shake or wave the Four Species on each of the seven days of Sukkot, usually before or during the Morning Service. This shaking or waving of the Four Species is symbolic of the completion of the yearly cycle, of freedom, and of peace and harmony. We shake the lulav in every direction to indicate God’s presence throughout the world, while facing east towards Jerusalem.

Because an etrog can easily be damaged and because certain kinds of damage cause it to become unacceptable for use as part of the Four Species on Sukkot, it is typically wrapped in protective layers and placed inside a box (אתרוג תיבת).

Shop Simcha for the High Holy Days

2017-08-30 18.06.44The Simcha Gift Shop at Congregation Emanu-El has kippot, tallitot, Rosh Hashanah cards and many other Judaica items.
The gift shop is located at Congregation Emanu-El at the southern end of the Social Hall.
You may shop during office hours: Tues-Thurs 9:30-2:30 or by appointment by email. We accept cash, cheques, and credit cards. Come check us out!

About the tallit

Tallit (Heb. טַלִּית, pl. tallitot; Yid. tales, pl. talesim), is a prayer shawl worn traditionally by male Jews during the daily morning service (shaḥarit); it is also worn by the leader of the service during the afternoon service (minḥa). On Yom Kippur, males wear it for all five services and on Tisha be-Av only during the afternoon service. Rectangular in shape, the wool (or sometimes silk) shawl has black or blue stripes with fringes (tzitzit) affixed to the four corners as the Bible prescribes (Numbers 15:38). Two fringes fall in front, two behind. Often an embroidered collar is added, inscribed with the blessing to be recited when the ṭallit is put on. A pious Jew is often buried in his ṭallit after one of the fringes has been removed.

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