Jewish Belonging in Prince Edward Island

An Article by Clarrie Feinstein Published March 14 2021 in Niv Magazine.

The majority of the members of the Jewish community who are still on the island today arrived in the 1970s or later. Medjuck notes that a Torah scroll was borrowed in 1975 for the first known High Holy Day services—the first time a Torah had been brought to the island—and again in 1976 for the first known Bar Mitzvah celebration. The community formally organized itself in 1993, with Dr. Joseph Naylor being elected first president.Now, the Jewish community has Jews come from Israel, India, Jamaica, and the U.S., which is where Mednick and community member Leslie Sacks are from. 

“So many people, from so many different places, with different traditions,” Sacks said in her Brooklyn accent. “This place is truly magical, I can’t describe it.” 

While it is a magical community, it’s one Mednick isn’t used to. “I come from an Orthodox upbringing. My father was a rabbi, and I attended Yeshiva University in New York. But what this community is about, is the people. There’s intermarriage; I myself married someone Catholic, and people who have converted—we’re the periphery of the Jewish community. But everyone likes the environment here, and we enjoy being a part of it.” 

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