All rights reserved © 2017​ Susan Shamash  l  Vancouver, BC

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September 26, 2018

The word Mincha literally means present, gift or offering.  Normally at Mincha on Yom Kippur you may experience a Torah service, with a reading either about forbidden relationships or about being a holy people (I prefer the latter) and Haftarah Yonah/Jonah, either with a traditional or an experimental presentation, and end with an Amidah.  Today … not!


I wrote this SpeakChorus, Marginalizatio...

April 20, 2018

(Presented at Limmud Vancouver, 2018)

When I was in Rabbinic school, I took a history course on the Jewish Enlightenment/Haskalah, a movement which arose first in Western Europe (Germany mainly) and later in Eastern Europe, from the late 18th until the late 19th centuries.

Required reading for the course was Iris Parush’s book Reading Jewish Women: Marginality and Modernization in Nineteenth-Century...

April 19, 2017

When I began my Senior Teshuva (Responsa) project, knowing that Or Shalom was in the process of acquiring the rights to a section of Mountain View Cemetery, wanting to ask a “live” question (as we are enjoined to do), the question I posed was whether it was possible to accommodate the needs, dreams, wishes, desires of those who wanted to be buried only with other Jews, those who wanted to be burie...

April 9, 2017

(Prepared for Independent Jewish Voices) 

I think I’m the only Canadian born on this panel.  Not only was I born in Canada, in North Battleford, Saskatchewan to be exact, my parents were also born in Canada.  Even more than that, my maternal grandfather was also born in Canada.  My families’ roots in Canada are very deep and wide.  Both sides came to Canada in the late 19th century, probably fleein...

January 15, 2017

(Prepared for my Ordination Ceremony January 15, 2017) 

I had the privilege of sharing the Ordination stage with four extraordinary women.  We came from a variety of backgrounds, and each of us had a story to tell.  Each of us shared a little about our paths to that day. But more importantly, we spoke of our visions for the future.

We are a living in troubled, turbulent times. As we took o...

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September 26, 2018

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