Kafe & Kibitz resumes

kafe kibitzSunday, January 19, 2020, 10:15 am to noon,  710 Pandora Avenue lobby—Kafe & Kibitz is back! Come schmooze with other parents in a warm & welcoming environment. For January 19, the theme is “Judaism and the Environment.” Dr. Rick Kool, who teaches at Royal Roads University in the School of Environment and Sustainability will join us. Parents are welcome to bring young children along. If you have any questions, please contact Jennifer Karmona at (jkarmo@gmail.com). We look forward to engaging conversation, laughter, reflection, support, and, of course, caffeine. Everyone is welcome, including  non-members—feel free to spread the word. Find us online at the Jewish Families Greater Victoria Facebook group.

Kiddush Honoring Leah Levi

Safta Leah

On Saturday, November 30, 2019 following services, the Reznick family invites the congregation to attend a kiddush luncheon in honour of our wonderful Leah Levi. With deepest gratitude and appreciation for all of her years running the best Hebrew School this side of the Rockies, for her dedication to Camp Miriam, and for making warm nurturing educational environments for our children.

Hebrew School Fundraiser Apple Juice Still Available


Last Sunday Pardes Farm sold 29 two-liter jugs of organic Gravenstein juice in support of our wonderful Hebrew school. The juice disappeared so quickly that we’ve added 21 more bottles for sale.
There’s no more juice at the synagogue, so please contact Jill at jillswartz@gmail.com to snag your own supply of this rich-tasting organic juice ($10 per 2 liter jug) while making a contribution to the Hebrew school at the same time.

Organic Gravenstein Apple Juice Sale: Hebrew School Fundraiser

apple_juice_14Sunday, September 15, 2019 at 12 pm —Organic Gravenstein apple juice grown at Pardes Farm in Saanich! $10 for 2 litres.

  • Usually we have a mix of apples in our juice, but this year, the Gravensteins were plentiful, so we’ve pressed an early batch of juice solely made up of our prize-winning Gravensteins.
  • Come out and try it. Support the Hebrew school. You can also write to Jillswartz@gmail.com and we’ll set aside some bottles of juice for you to pick up at the Hebrew School sale, Sunday, September 15 at noon.

Emanu-El Participates in National Bible Contest: כול הכבוד

Bible Contest Photo 1.2

The National Bible Contest was held in Montreal this past Sunday and Monday. Six of Congregation Emanuel’s Grade five/six class competed long distance from Vancouver. The material was parts of Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy, a total of 23 chapters. On Sunday morning the students wrote a 50-question multiple choice exam and two other exams which required them to answer questions like “who said to whom?” and “what does this mean”: “the wages of your labourer shall not remain with you until morning”. Continue reading Emanu-El Participates in National Bible Contest: כול הכבוד

Attention parents: Kafe & Kibitz

kafe kibitz

Sunday, April 28, 10:15 am to noon, 710 Pandora Avenue lobby — Come hang out with other parents in a warm & welcoming environment; feel free to bring along any young children currently in tow. We look forward to engaging conversation, laughter, reflection, support, and, of course, caffeine. Everyone is welcome, including non-members. NEW LOCATION: We’ll be meeting in the lobby of 710 Pandora Avenue (the new building at Pandora & Douglas) beside Sherwood Cafe.

Bear This in Mind!

Bear stuffiesThis year, the Hebrew School tried something new and different on Tuesday afternoons: teachers Beatrice and Leah asked students to bring in teddy bear ‘stuffies’ to serve as symbolic (and cuddly) surrogates for learning about Jewish life-cycle events.

The students chose Hebrew names for their ‘stuffies’, which they gave the bears at a “naming ceremony” in December, for which each student also made her or his bear a kippah and a wimple (usually used to tie Torah scrolls) to use as a sash.

Later, the bears were prepared for a ‘Bear-Mitzvah’. To do this, each student was given a mitzvah to do on behalf of his or her bear, such as visiting the sick or helping someone in need.

It was very moving for educators and parents to see these children talking about what Jewish life-cycle events mean to them. The students also explained how they understand the meaning of the phrase, in the Ve’ahavta prayer, that calls upon Jews to “impress them” (i.e., the words of the shamma prayer) “on their children.”

The ‘Bear Mitzvah’ finale event was held during a Friday night family Kabbalat Shabbat on March 1. Students chanted prayers, sang songs, and, together with their bears, stood under a “Bear Mitzvah” tallit shawl for a blessing from the congregation.

The Jewish bear project has been a wonderful means of imparting Jewish education in ways that are meaningful to children. It also attests to the educational value of Tuesday afternoon Hebrew School classes, where there is more time and space to focus in depth on a learning project.

So, is the Jewish bear project now over? Maybe not. We hear that somebody’s preparing for a wedding! Stay tuned for a bear ḥuppah