Pitching the Prophets

Enjoying the prophets!The slight look of amusement on Francis Landy’s face is a small indication of the pleasure he took at his talk on Wednesday, May 30 while recounting how Elijah was terrified by Jezebel and sought refuge in a cave. The audience was captivated by the inside track that Francis was able to provide about the Prophets, Poetry and Imagination and eagerly await The Prophets Season 2.


Tikkun Leil Shavuot: Expanding Torah

Drone Torah Delivery6May 19 at 7:30 pm, Congregation Emanu-El — This year at Tikkun Leil Shavuot, our all night Torah study will focus on expanding Torah. We will hear from new voices in our community and we will explore how Torah learning can inform modern life. The learning starts on Saturday, May 19 at 7:30 pm. You can stay for a short spell or the entire night. This is sure to be a wonderful connecting evening of sharing ideas, singing and friendship. In addition, there will be delicious dairy desserts, coffee, tea and other goodies to keep you going! The evening continues and will conclude with Shaarit service at about 5:00 am. All are welcome.

The line-up for our study session is the following:

  • Andrew Gow—How to be an engaged Jew who is not a Zionist.
  • Enid Elliot—About Emmi Pickler, a Hungarian Jewish educator, and loving-kindness
  • Catherine Bianco—Personal connection with mikveh
  • Maariv
  • Nehama Shira (aka Josie Davidson)—Song circles: song leading
  • Devy Stone—Chickens, Jane Austen and Jewish Life
  • Daniel Biro—the origins of trope
  • Rav Louis—the sefirot and the Amidah
  • Francis Landy—Exploring Mount Sinai from different angles and perspectives.
  • Rabbi Harry—Jewish ritual magic
  • Shaḥarit

Prophets, Poetry and Imagination

נביאים3Wednesday, May 30 at 7:00 pm Congregation Emanu-El — Having introduced us to the biblical prophets (Nevi’im) in his first talk, Dr. Landy will now discuss some particular prophetic texts, in order to come to appreciate the beauty of their poetry, the intensity of the existential crises they articulate, their sense of wonder and horror, as well as the sheer difficulty of trying to understand them. The texts will come from what is generally regarded as the earliest period of prophetic poetry, in the 8th century BCE, and will include key passages from Amos, Hosea and Isaiah.

Francis Landy is a biblical scholar who has recently made his home in Victoria, after a career of over thirty years at the University of Alberta. He has published a number of books and many articles, and is a specialist in the poetry of the Hebrew Bible. He is a member of Congregation Emanu-El.

This talk is sponsored by the Emanu-El Adult Education Team. This is the second of two talks on Prophets and Prophecy.

Entry is by donation: light refreshments will be served.

Making of an artist: Pnina Granirer

Pnina Talk publicityMay 2, 2018 at 7 pm Congregation Emanu-El — After a long career as a visual artist, Pnina Granirer published her memoir Light Within The Shadows last year. Congregation Emanu-El Adult Education Team invites you to the synagogue on May 2, 2018 at 7 pm when Pnina will share herstory with us.

Born in Romania in 1935, she moved to Israel in 1950, and came to Canada in 1965. Throughout her life she has created a large body of art while searching for beauty and spirituality. She will speak to us of her successes and failures and how issues of dislocation, otherness, being a woman and the uprooted soul’s wish for permanency and belonging shaped her art. She will offer us insight into how art is forged and released into the world.

Entry is by donation: book signing to follow: light refreshments will be served. 

 Pnina Granirer has exhibited her work locally, nationally and internationally since 1962. She has shown in more than eighty solo exhibitions. Her work has been included in numerous group exhibitions, and in books and exhibition catalogues in Canada, Israel, Spain, Portugal, Costa Rica and Chile. Her works are found in many private and public collections in Canada (some as cultural property donations), the US, Chile, Europe and Israel. Recently her triptyich Sorrow, Hope, Truth has been hung in Government House, Victoria BC.

Pnina Granirer: Celebrating a Life’s Work; a 40 Years Survey, her retrospective of 120 works at the Richmond Art Gallery in January 1998, reflected the artistic development over her long career. The lavishly illustrated book Pnina Granirer: Portrait of an Artist by Ted Lindberg (Ronsdale Press) was launched at the opening of the exhibition and a film on her work by Mehdi Ali was first screened in 2005 on Bravo!TV.

The Trials of Eve, a major work of 12 mixed media drawings and 12 poems, now in the collection of the Glenbow Museum in Calgary, Alberta, was published as an Alcuin Citation Award limited edition book and later as a softcover. The book has been acquired by numerous Special Collections of Universities, Art Galleries and libraries as well as by private collectors. A film by the same title was first shown at the FIFA in Paris, and subsequently on Bravo!TV, on Knowledge Network and other venues.

In 1993 Granirer co-founded Artists in our Midst, the first ongoing Open Studio Walk in Vancouver, BC. For six years she organized and hosted Philosopher Art Cafes sponsored by Simon Fraser University.

In 2014 the artist was included in the encyclopedia of International Surrealism by Arturo Schwarz, Il Surrealismo — Ieri e oggi (Italy) and in a 5-page chapter of José Miguel Pérez Corrales’s Anthology, Surrealismo: El Oro del Tiempo (Spain).

Visit Pnina’s web site…for a review of Light Within the Shadows: A Painter’s Memoir…

Who were the Prophets?

נביאים3Sunday, April 29 at 2:00 pm, Congregation Emanu-El synagogue — The writings of the prophets occupy a large section of the Hebrew Bible. Who were the biblical prophets? What was their message and their legacy?
On Sunday, April 29 at 2:00 pm in Congregation Emanu-El synagogue, 1461 Blanshard Street, Dr. Francis Landy will give the first of two talks on Prophets and Prophecy sponsored by the Emanu-El Adult Education Team. Entry is by donation.

In this talk, Dr. Landy will give some background to the biblical prophets and to the historical situation to which they responded, to the relation between prophets and the prophetic books named after them, and to other strands of ancient Jewish thought, such as the priestly tradition, the historical books, and wisdom literature.

Francis Landy is a biblical scholar who has recently made his home in Victoria, after a career of over thirty years at the University of Alberta. He has published a number of books and many articles, and is a specialist in the poetry of the Hebrew Bible. He has written on the Song of Songs, Isaiah, Hosea and other books, as well as the theory of the study of religion. He is an Associate Fellow of the UVIC Centre for the Study of Religion and Society. He is a member of Congregation Emanu-El and a study partner of Rabbi Harry Brechner.

Hebrew School for Grown Ups: Spring Session

HSGU Final

April 12 – May 31 – Congregation Emanu-El — Did you miss out on the Hebrew School experience? Was your Hebrew school experience so bland or painful that you tuned out? This class will give you some of the basic building blocks of Jewish knowledge and fill in some important gaps; from learning that Hebrew song that everyone else seems to know, to helping you make sense of Jewish liturgical prayer. Continue reading Hebrew School for Grown Ups: Spring Session

Havdalah Salon: Tales from a Calcutta Childhood

Havdalah March 17 1.2 (2)

Saturday, March 17, 7 pm — Beginning about 7 pm, Rabbi Harry will lead us in Havdalah followed by Seemah Berson telling us some Tales from a Calcutta Childhood. This presentation will launch an Adult Education Series on Sefardi Jewish life and culture.

Seemah is the author of I Have a Story to Tell You a book containing the untarnished stories and word for word accounts collected from Eastern European Jewish immigrants about their journeying to Canada and finding work in the sweatshops and needle trades of Montreal.

But Seemah has more tales to tell… She was born in Calcutta (as she says – Kolkata she does not know) into families of Baghdadi and Iranian roots who settled there during the time of the British Raj. She lived and grew up in a thriving Sefardi Jewish community, until she left for Canada in 1954.

Seemah is no stranger to Emanu-El as she visited in 2010 to present her book. Anyone who remembers that presentation will know that she is a natural raconteur who demonstrates wit and perspicacity in her writing and recounting. Now she is coming back to regale us with her tales of Jewish life in Calcutta, before it became Kolkata.

This is a Havdalah Salon not to be missed.

We will start around 7 pm, please bring desserts to share, YOB and register with the office, so we have an idea of the number to expect.