Congregation Emanu-El is composed of an eclectic group of some 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.
News & Events
Some events below are external initiatives not sponsored by Congregation Emanu-El.
Tu BiShvat Nature Walk and Seder
Sunday February 12, 2017 at 1:30 pm
Is 2017 the year that you plan to get out a bit more in nature and be active??
Or, perhaps you are already a routine outdoors’ enthusiast?? Either way, we have something special in store for you to celebrate the New Year of the Trees. We will take a gentle walk on the wild side at Mount Douglas Park. Read more >>
Note: If there is still snow on the ground on Sunday, the hike will be cancelled, and details about a Seder at the synagogue will be sent via email.
Sketches Of Israel And The Middle East
Arabic Hebrew: How Modern Israelis Really Speak
New date: February 19, 2:30pm in the sanctuary
“Arabic-Hebrew” has become such an integral part of everyday speech that most Israelis are unaware that many words they commonly use are Arabic. Anyone seeking to gain a true knowledge of modern spoken Hebrew, or to understand Israelis when they’re speaking, must acquaint themselves with this side of Hebrew that does not appear in any siddur or even in Hebrew language textbooks.
Read More >>
Honouring our fathers
February 18, 2017
A group of Emanu-El daughters (and now two sons) invite you to join them on the yahrzeit of their fathers honouring them by participating in Shabbat service and a Kiddush which follows. Please join them.
Read More >>
Congregation Emanu-El Steps Up to Support Refugees
At long last, our Syrian refugee family – mother Samar, father Ubaydah and four-year-old son Faruq – touched down at the Victoria airport on Thursday, September 22 at 10:30 pm.
So much of this effort has been made possible through the extraordinary generosity and caring of Congregation Emanu-El and the community. To each and every one who has contributed in a myriad of ways…our sincere gratitude. –Jean Dragushan, coordinator
Listen to a CBC interview with Jean Dragushan of Emanu-El on this topic.
Experience a guided tour of Canada's oldest synagogue, Congregation Emanu-El. Thursdays, June–August, and at other times by prior arrangement.
Synagogue Tour: 1:00–1:50 p.m.
Walking Tour: 2:00–3:30 p.m.
For more information, please visit our Synagogue Tours page.
"The rest is commentary"
Emanu-El extends solace to Masjid Al-Iman
Earlier this week our President Aharon Ittah extended solace to our Muslim neighbors over the recent Quebec slaughter of Muslims at prayer. The text of his letter and the response of the Masjid al-Iman can be read here >>
In the Rabbi's Own Words
In the wake of the attack on Masjid Al-Iman
If we understand the Exodus story as the eternal paradigm of liberation, we must also understand that this liberation archetype is entirely relevant and holds integral core messages for the here and now. Mitzrayim does not refer to contemporary Egypt. The word Mitzrayim holds the meaning tzar—narrow. Mitzrayim is the state of being enslaved. It is the place of absolute constriction; a loss of personal and collective liberation that verges on a loss of self. With this loss of self is a loss of perceiving one’s personal value as a being created in the Divine image; a loss of individuality and expression. Read more >>
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.