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Audiovisual recordings

Series consists of records relating to Searcy’s worship leadership at University Hill Congregation, presentations at Maritime Conference and Berwick Camp, Nova Scotia, and retirement service and luncheon.

Significant documents

Series consists of records relating to Searcy’s career as student, pastoral minister, lecturer and presenter, writer, and leader in the wider church. Record types include correspondence, news clippings, photographs, academic degrees, curriculum vitae, copies of articles, handwritten letters of appreciation, orders of service, and memorabilia from special events.

Leadership-related records

Series consists of records relating to Searcy’s leadership as Chair of the Land Claims Campaign, BC Conference, and in the matter of the partnership between University Hill Congregation and the Vancouver School of Theology. Records include correspondence, statistical analyses, meeting notes, copy of an agreement, and promotional materials.

Publications and manuscripts

Series consists of records relating to Searcy’s written contributions to periodicals and books. Records include draft manuscripts and galley proofs.

Student papers

Series consists of records relating to research, essays, and projects undertaken in fulfillment of requirements toward Searcy’s Bachelor of Arts, Master of Divinity, and Doctor of Ministry degrees.

Lectures and addresses

Series consists of records relating to Searcy’s public presentations in various settings, primarily about congregational ministry, to lay and clergy leaders of the wider church. Records include scripts and handwritten notes.


Series consists of records relating to Searcy’s preaching at Crescent United Church (Surrey, BC), South Arm United Church (Richmond, BC), and University Hill Congregation (Vancouver, BC). Records include typescript sermons.

Edwin Searcy fonds

  • Fonds
  • 1974-2015

Fonds consists of records relating to Ed Searcy’s work in pastoral ministry, his studies, his teaching and writing, and his work in the wider church. Fonds comprises the following record series: Sermons (1974-2008); Lectures and addresses (2000-2007); Leadership-related records ([1991]-2003); Publications and manuscripts (1989-2015); Student papers (1974-2002); Audiovisual recordings (2001-2015); and Significant documents (1976-2015).

Searcy, Edwin


Records in sub-series document the planning and organization of tribute events honouring individuals active in the Jewish community in BC, and significant figures in the history of the Holocaust. Records in sub-series include invitations, press releases, research materials and other documents.

Cultural programming

Sub-series consists of records generated as a result of the cultural programming activity of the VHEC and/or the VHCS. Records in sub-series include promotional and educational materials, budgets, publicity, correspondence and guest lists related to events organized or sponsored by the VHEC or the VHCS. Sub-series is further divided into sub-sub-series based on cultural form: Film and video events (1992–[2003]), Book events (1992–2003), Art and photography events (1989–1998), Music, theatre and radio events (1994–2009) and Other cultural events (1991–1992).

31st annual WFJCSH&D conference

Sub-sub-series is conference program for the World Federation of Jewish Child Survivors of the Holocaust and Descendants, held in Vancouver in 2019 in association with the VHEC and documents and audio recordings pertaining to the VHEC’s support of an exhibition of artworks by Malka Pischanitskaya organized as part of the conference.

Shafran teachers’ conference

Sub-sub-series is comprised of records generated as a result of the VHEC’s organization of a bi-annual professional development conference aimed at educators teaching the Holocaust in elementary, high school and university settings. Conference programming is aimed at investigating strategies and rationale for teaching the Holocaust within the provincial curriculum. The Educators’ Conference was first programmed in 1999 under the guidance of the Teachers’ Advisory Committee and with financial assistance from the Shafran Endowment fund of the VHCS. It was renamed the Shafran Teachers’ Conference in 2003.

Records in sub-sub-series include conference programs, opening remarks, Teachers’ Advisory Committee meeting minutes, participant feedback, teacher packets and related materials.

Workshops, lectures and forums

Sub-series is comprised of correspondence, promotional material and other records related to lectures, workshops and discussions programmed or co-presented by the VHEC. Events are programmed for audiences of adults, including teachers, members of the Jewish community, other cultural groups and the wider public.

The Past Hangs Over the Future conference

Sub-sub-series consists of programs, newspaper clippings, correspondence, budgets, rental agreements, essays and other documents to do with the development and planning of The Past Hangs Over the Future: Reconciliation and the Responsibility of the Second Generation conference, held in 1998.

Primo Levi conference

Sub-sub-series consists of records accumulated by Roberta S. Kremer in her role as coordinator of the first Canadian conference on the work of the Italian writer Primo Levi, held in Vancouver in November 1995. Conference was sponsored by the VHEC, UBC, the Italian Cultural Centre and the Italian Cultural Institute. Events programmed as part of the conference included a film, concert, lectures and panels.

Records in sub-sub-series are correspondence, promotional materials, a bibliography, teachers’ guide, publicity clippings and other documents. Records pertaining to the editing and publication of Memory and Mastery: Primo Levi as Writer and Witness, edited by Roberta S. Kremer and published as part of the State University of New York series in Modern Jewish Literature and Culture, are included in this sub-sub-series.

Conference programming

Sub-series is comprised of records pertaining to the organization of educational conferences programmed for adults, including teachers, the second generation of Holocaust survivors and other members of the Jewish community.

Conferences are arranged in chronological order. They are single events with the exception of the Shafran Teachers’ Conference, which is bi-annual. Sub-series is arranged into the following sub-sub-series: Primo Levi conference (1993–1999), The Past Hangs Over the Future conference (1992–1999), The Second Generation and the Legacy of the Holocaust (2001), the Shafran teachers’ conference (1999–2019) and the 31st annual SFJCSH&D conference (2019).

Judgement on Nuremberg: Symposium and student mock trial

Sub-sub-series consists of invitations, correspondence, promotional materials, newspaper clippings, docent notes, teachers’ guide and other materials generated as a result of the organization of the Judgement on Nuremberg symposium and student mock trial school program presented by the VHEC in 1996. Mock trial school program was re-presented in 2008; records generated as a result of the organization of that school program included in sub-sub-series.

Survivor Outreach Program

Records in this sub-sub-series are created and kept by members of the Outreach Committee and by staff of the VHEC and pertain to educational outreach programming on the subject of the Holocaust in BC. At the time of the opening of the VHEC, the Outreach Committee’s mandate was to provide knowledge of the events of the Holocaust to BC students, educators and special interest groups through eyewitness testimony. Committee members trained and scheduled docents and speakers to share their memories of the Holocaust, including experiences of discrimination, segregation, separation from and loss of family, as well as life in hiding, the ghettos, concentration camps, liberation and immigration to Canada. Survivor outreach speakers visit schools and other locations to tell their personal stories, promote anti-racism and challenge youth to become committed and responsible global citizens, alert to bullying, discrimination, racism and genocide.

Sub-sub-series consists of textual records and photographs generated as a result of survivor outreach programming by the members of the Outreach Committee and by staff of the VHEC. Records in sub-series include minutes, notes, reports, letters from students and program lists. Records documenting district symposia are included in sub-sub-series.

Annual symposium on the Holocaust

Sub-sub-series consists of records documenting the organization of the Annual High School Symposium on the Holocaust. Prior to the opening of the VHEC, the annual symposium was organized by members of the Canadian Jewish Congress – Pacific Region’s Standing Committee on the Holocaust. In 1995, the responsibility for organizing the event was transferred to the VHEC and its High School Symposium Committee. In 2010, the Symposium Committee was disbanded and its activities brought under the banner of the VHCS’s Program Committee. From the first symposium in 1976 to 2017, the event was held at the University of British Columbia and attended by high school students from around the region.

Records in sub-sub-series include programs, video documentation, lists, correspondence, photographs, budgets, committee meeting minutes and planning documents created or received by staff of the VHEC or volunteer members of the VHCS and its Symposium Committee.

Symposia and school programming

Sub-series is comprised of records pertaining to educational programming geared primarily toward senior high school students. Main program areas are classroom outreach, district-wide symposia and an annual symposium on the Holocaust. Sub-series includes records documenting the organization of a symposia aimed at adults, Judgement on Nuremberg, programmed in 1996, and its accompanying school program, the Student Mock Trial of Julius Streicher.

Sub-series is divided into three sub-sub-series by program area: Annual symposium on the Holocaust records (1989–2019), Survivor Outreach Program records (1986–2019) and Judgement on Nuremberg program records (1996–1997, 2008). Most records are generated by VHEC staff. Some pre-date the opening of the centre and were created by volunteer members of the VHCS and its committees focused on educational programming.


Sub-sub-series consists of records generated and accumulated as a result of the VHEC’s organization of the Kristallnacht commemorative event in Vancouver, held annually in early November. Kristallnacht, or the “Night of Broken Glass,” was a state-sponsored pogrom the night of November 9th, 1938; hundreds of synagogues in Germany and Austria were burned, Jewish-owned businesses were destroyed, nearly 100 Jews were killed and 30,000 men were sent to concentration camps. The mandate of the Kristallnacht Commemorative Program Committee was: to produce an informative, educational lecture that helps the community gain a deeper understanding of the events of the Holocaust, its implication for society and on the community, to bring in leading scholars, writers, researchers and thinkers who would not otherwise be heard in the community, and to foster dialogue by informing the community about the history of the Holocaust.

Records in sub-series were generated by volunteer members of the Kristallnacht Commemorative Program Committee and by VHEC staff. They include promotional materials, participant lists, press releases, instructions to candle-lighters, newspaper clippings, correspondence, meeting minutes, budgets, transcripts of speeches and notes.

High Holidays memorial service

Sub-sub-series is comprised of records created and kept by the VHCS and later, the VHEC, as a result of the organization of and participation in commemorative events held at the site of BC’s Holocaust Memorial, built by the VHCS’s Holocaust Memorial Committee and unveiled in 1987 at the Schara Tzedeck Cemetery in New Westminster. The memorial was intended to give members of the Jewish community a physical space to remember loved ones lost during the Holocaust, and to ensure the Holocaust is never forgotten. The VHCS’s Cemetery Service Committee, and later, staff of the VHEC programmed an annual ceremony on the Sunday between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur (the High Holidays), a Sunday traditionally observed as a time of the year to remember those who have passed away. Some programs are presented with the Schara Tzedeck congregation and the Jewish War Veterans.
Records in sub-sub-series include promotional material, correspondence, notes and planning documents.

Yom HaShoah

Sub-sub series consists of records generated and accumulated as a result of the VHEC’s participation in and organization of events marking Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day), observed in April or May each year on or around the 27th day of Nisan in order to mourn the six million Jews who perished in the Holocaust as a result of the actions carried out by Nazi Germany and its collaborators, and to pay tribute to the Jewish resistance during that period. Yom HaShoah was first observed in Israel in 1951; it was anchored in a law passed by the Knesset in 1959 and is observed by Jewish communities internationally. The VHEC’s annual program brings together Holocaust survivors, successive generations and the wider public for candle-lighting, music and speakers. Programs were planned by volunteer members of the Warsaw Ghetto Committee, the Yom HaShoah Holocaust Remembrance Committee of the Canadian Jewish Congress and the Yom HaShoah committee of the VHCS. After 2014 Yom HaShoah commemorative events have been organized by staff of the VHEC.

Records in sub-sub series include promotional materials, press releases, newspaper clippings, correspondence, notes, budgets and other documents created and/or kept by VHEC staff.

International Holocaust Remembrance Day

Sub-sub-series is comprised of records generated and accumulated as a result of the VHEC’s participation in and organization of events marking International Holocaust Remembrance Day, held annually on or around January 27th, the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau. International Holocaust Remembrance Day was established in 2005 by the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 60/7. It honours the memory of victims of the Holocaust and rejects Holocaust denial and condemns religious intolerance and persecution.
Records in this sub-sub-series include programs, flyers, correspondence, budgets, notes and other documents related to the VHEC’s annual commemoration of International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

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