Congregation Emanu-El is composed of an eclectic group of 200 families who come together to create a dynamic and spiritual expression of Jewish life. It is a place of love and growth where deep friendships are forged and nourished. We believe in connecting people to one another and to their Jewish roots and traditions, as well as nourishing feelings of community, security and belonging.
Events & projects
2014 Restoration of the 1863 sanctuary Emanu-El of Victoria
The interim report of the committee overseeing the restoration of our 1863 synagogue was released on July 23, 2014. The report provides fascinating insights that will appeal to history and architecture buffs, and it demonstrates the extraordinary lengths to which the restoration project has gone in preserving the original look and feel of our historic building. Read the report >>
Synagogue Tours, Spring-Summer 2014
Experience a guided tour of Canada's oldest synagogue, Congregation Emanu-el. Summer tours are conducted every Thursday, June 12 - August 28, at 1:00. For more information, please visit our Synagogue Tours page.
Congregation Emanu-El participates in Victoria Pride parade 2014
A group of about 25 members of the congregation gathered on Sunday, July 6, 2014 to help celebrate LGBTQ Pride Week and to announce ourselves as members of and/or allies to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender communities in Victoria. It was the first time that the Congregation has organized a contingent to march in the Pride parade — and it was fun!
Sefer Emanu-El — available now!
Sefer Emanu-El is an attractive 120-page, full-colour hardcover book describing the history of Victoria’s Jewish Community, our congregation, and our beautiful historic building. It will be a treasured memento. To purchase, please see the Sefer Emanu-El webpage.
Small & Mighty: the inspirational story of Avodah
This new multimedia presentation and accompanying presenter’s guide showcases our stories to inspire and inform others implementing their own social action initiatives.
"The rest is commentary"
Rabbi's Corner –– מפי הרב
Revenge is never Jewish.
I feel let down by my people’s leaders in Israel. It boils down to this: We are not allowed as humans to seek revenge. Revenge does not belong in the realm of humans. Torah is the core and root of our identity as Jews. Our collective consciousness is linked directly to Torah. We learn that kol netivoteikha shalom--all pathways of Torah are shalom. When a Jewish leader calls for revenge, or uses rhetoric that escalates tensions and violence, it is in in opposition to Jewish values and Torah. Read more >>
Shabbat guest drasha
Guest commentary by Dr. Lincoln Z. Shlensky, who offered a Dvar Torah (sermon) on the Torah portion of the week, Matot, during Congregation Emanu-El's Shabbat services on July 19, 2014. This weekly portion includes the notoriously troubling chapter, Numbers 31. Read the drash here >>
A Year of Wonderful Celebration
Congregation Emanu-El celebrated, in 2013, its 150th year sitting at the corner of Pandora and Blanshard in Victoria. It was a year for commemoration, celebration, and education. We worked hard on the restoration so that our beloved synagogue would last another 150 years and more. Please consider assisting our ongoing restoration efforts in 2014 by donating.
Rabbi Harry's Welcome Message
Rabbi Harry Brechner, who has been Congregation Emanu-El's rabbi since 2001, welcomes anyone interested in the Congregation's many activities and community events, including prayer services.