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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19 Reviews for Rabbi Susan Shamash
28 User photos
Naomi M. · 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.
Meaghan · Getting married on 09/10/2021
An incredible experience!
Rabbi Susan was so incredible to work with. She listened to everything we wanted and designed the ceremony of our dreams that was very meaningful to both of our families. She was so flexible and helped us work around Covid-19 so we could still celebrate our special day. I cannot recommend her enough.Sent on 08/10/2020
Rabbi Susan Shamash's reply:Thank you Meaghan for this warm and heartfelt review. You and Brandon are an awesome couple. You navigated the shoals and disappointments of Covid-19 with grace, humour and love. I felt privileged to celebrate your big day with ceremony that was entirely unique to you and your circumstances. I look forward to Part 2!!
Michelle V. · Married on 03/05/2020
If you are looking for a Rabbi, I would highly recommend Rabbi Susan. From the first she was responsive, kind, and patient. She answered all our questions and designed a beautiful interfaith ceremony that was unique to us and incorporated lots of beautiful Jewish elements. She walked us through all aspects of the marriage ceremony including ketubah and kippah suggestions and well as what documents etc we would need on the day. We had lots of compliments day of regarding the ceremony and Rabbi Susan, definitely reccommend!Sent on 28/09/2020
Rabbi Susan Shamash's reply:Michelle and Michael,
Hailey F. · 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 H. · 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.
Rabbi Susan Shamash awards
Team of Rabbi Susan Shamash
Rabbi & Celebrant
Hi, I'm Rabbi Susan and I am thrilled to celebrate your love with you. I am passionate about saying "yes" to enabling all Jews and their loved ones to celebrate Jewishly. I bring the beauty, meaning and spirituality, not to mention the fun and joy, of Judaism to your unique "Jewishish" wedding ceremony. Together we co-create a beautiful and meaningful ceremony that reflects all of who you truly are as a couple. I am blessed to be doing what I love.
Hi, I'm Dulce the Havanese hooligan. I love that my "Mom" invites so many people over to visit me. I provide a little pet therapy. I will greet you joyfully at the door, show off some of my agility skills, make you laugh, and maybe even lick your hands if you will only let me. Then I will fall asleep on "my" chair, and snore softly while you plan your wedding with the Rabbi.