About Rabbi Susan Shamash
Rabbi Susan Shamash is a progressive, independent Rabbi based in Vancouver, British Columbia. She was ordained by ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal, which embraces a contemporary egalitarian Judaism as a profound spiritual practice and social transformer, reaching beyond religious boundaries and institutional structures. She is passionate about "open tent" Judaism and, in her service to interfaith families, she occupies a unique niche in metropolitan Vancouver.
She offers inclusive and personalized services to celebrate your relationship and provide innovative life cycle event officiation, including interfaith, same-sex, and gender queer events. She doesn't just "show up" for your wedding. Her fee includes three in-person meetings (1-2 hours each) for informal counseling on:
How she works
She works together with your ideas, dreams, beliefs, values, personalities and the Jewish tradition to create the wedding ceremony you envision. She dedicates a minimum of 10 hours to preparing for your unique ceremony. Her fee also includes the Ketubah signing ritual and a venue assessment. Because of the simplicity of the Jewish wedding, it is not her custom to lead a rehearsal.
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12 Reviews for Rabbi Susan Shamash
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Naomi May · Married on 22/06/2019
Authentic and amazing experience!
Rabbi Susan was a pure delight to work with - if you call it "work" to join in creating the most meaningful personal ceremony we could imagine!!! From the outset, she set such a helpful structure to get to know us- we met several times and had introspective conversations + exercises about what makes us "us." It not only felt therapeutic but was helpful fodder for creating out vows and intention at the ceremony! She opened up about her passion about interfaith connection, and we felt that she really "got us."
On the day, she was enthusiastic to partake, and brought authentic, grounded, playful, joyous energy. Thats a tough balance to strike and she hit it marvellously. She added so much to our ceremony and we highly recommend going with Rabbi Susan for your Jewish or interfaith wedding ceremony!!!Sent on 02/07/2019
Rabbi Susan Shamash's reply:Thank you Naomi for such a wonderful "review". It was a joy and a privilege to meet and "work" with you and Kristoff and to co-create such a beautiful and meaningful wedding ceremony. You are an amazing couple, so much in love. The personal words of intention and commitment you spoke to each other brought tears to my eyes. I am deeply appreciative of the opportunity it/you gave me.
Hailey Fugman · Married on 29/08/2019
Rabbi Susan officiated our wedding. She was amazing and adapted her process to fit mine and my husbands busy schedule and specific needs. It was a great experience, I would highly recommend herSent on 22/09/2019
Rabbi Susan Shamash's reply:Thank you for your lovely review Hailey. You and David knew exactly what you wanted in your ceremony and were incredibly focused and efficient. It was a privilege, an honour and a privilege to co-create your wedding ceremony with the two of you and to be your officiant.
Carolina Heimann · Married on 21/07/2019
The most amazing officiant
Rabbi Susan was an absolute pleasure to work with. From the initial introductory meeting she made us feel welcome. We worked with her for over a year, even being invited over for dinners in which she introduced us to other couples like us (interfaith). The service itself was beautiful - very personalized to what we requested, and everyone had the best feedback to say about it. Overall, would highly recommend.Sent on 01/08/2019
Rabbi Susan Shamash's reply:Caro and George you are, in many ways, my “ideal couple”. Your love for and commitment to each other is awesome and your willingness to work deeply with me was inspiring. You knew exactly what you wanted and never for a moment forgot exactly who the ceremony was for (the two of you). It was a pleasure and a privilege to be your wedding officiant and I look forward to being your rabbi for many years to come.
Kathleen Muir · Married on 18/01/2020
Rabbi Susan is the absolute best.Sent on 01/03/2020
My husband did not grow up in any faith community and I grew up very Jewish. Rabbi Susan helped to teach up about Judaism and marriage in a way that supported my faith while making space for my husband to feel included and comfortable. We learned so much about ourselves, us as a couple, and about Judaism through Rabbi Susan's patient kindness.
Our ceremony was perfect! All of our guests commented on how they could feel the love in everything that was shared under the chuppah. We have a big wild family and Rabbi Susan greeted everyone with warmth, inclusion, and love.
18/10 (on a scale of 1-10)
Rabbi Susan Shamash's reply:Kathleen, thank you for this wonderful review. It was such an honour and a privilege, and a whole lot of fun, to "work" with you and Ryan to co-create such a loving and meaningful wedding ceremony. You are such a special couple. Your love for and commitment to each other, and each other's blossoming into your fullest potentials, is truly remarkable.
Nitzan Ziv · Married on 13/11/2019
Would not have been the same without her!!
Rabbi Susan has been absolutely amazing in every aspect of the wedding day and leading up to it. She carries her work with purpose and makes sure she personally gets to know you before the wedding day. I got to know Susan on a personal level and she's a beautiful and amazing person and my wedding day would not have been the same without her.
I was searching for a Rabbi to marry me and my husband for a long time (and because he's not fully Jewish, I got rejected by most of them). Rabbi Susan welcomed me with open arms and the rest is history :)
I am forever grateful for her service and community involvement.Sent on 28/11/2019
Rabbi Susan Shamash's reply:Nitzan and Ron! It was such a joyful and meaningful journey, even though we spent only two months together. Getting to know the interior beauty of your relationship and you glorious individuals allowed me the blessing of standing under the huppah with you with authenticity and delight. The gorgeous inclusivity of a big tent Judaism that celebrates our Jewish-adjacent partners, extended family, and friends is my passion. Saying yes to you and your family was deeply meaningful to me and I look forward to being your rabbi for many, many years as your life together unfolds.
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