Girl rabbi of the golden west

Find out how Congregation Emanu-El made history at Blanshard and Pandora in 1895 in

Ray Frank: The Girl Rabbi of the Golden West,

Find out how Congregation Emanu-El made history at Blanshard and Pandora in 1895 in

Ray Frank: The Girl Rabbi of the Golden West, April 11, at 7:30 p.m.

In 1895, something almost unbelievable happened in Canada’s oldest continuous place of

Jewish worship: a woman was hired to serve as religious leader of a Jewish congregation.

As part of its 150th anniversary celebrations, Congregation Emanu-El will bring this historic

event to life in a performance of the new play.

For three weeks in September, 1895, Ray Frank of California made women’s, and world

religious, history by officiating from the pulpit of a synagogue throughout the holidays for all

religious services.

Remarkably, she was formally invited to serve as the congregation’s rabbi by the all-male

board of directors of (what was then) an orthodox synagogue.

During her stay in Victoria she sparked a revival of hope, tolerance, love and progressive optimism

in the hearts and minds of all who heard her — including the community’s most cynical

and despairing members. This workshop performance by Jennifer Wise will be staged

in the historic sanctuary of the synagogue, the very location where the events of the play

took place in 1895.

Admission by donation, doors open at 7 p.m.