Congregation Ezra Bessaroth
Congregation Ezra Bessaroth is a Sephardic Congregation in Seattle founded by immigrants from the Mediterranean Island of Rhodes. The Synagogue holds true to our Sephardic traditions, fastidiously maintaining the liturgy and customs of the Rhodes tradition.
The first of our congregation to make the journey from Greek Island of Rhodes to Seattle was Nessim Alhadeff, (1904). Within three years all of his brothers and many others followed him. By 1909 the first steps at formal organization were taken. Moved by the leadership of Haim DeLeon the original group of Rhodeslis formed, (Succoth 1909) the Koupa Ozer Dalim Anshe Rhodes (the fund for the aid of the poor, people of Rhodes) - with Solomon Alhadeff as president, Nessim AIhadeff as treasurer and Harry Franco as secretary. Funds were raised from within the group and were sent to the needy Jewish community of Rhodes.
A series of milestone events marked the celebration of our congregation's centennial year in 2010. Most notably was the dedication of the Franco Family Courtyard. A mosaic platform inspired by the unique tiling on the floor of the Kahal Shalom synagogue in Rhodes was installed in the remodeled courtyard as was a stunning replica of the Rhodes Holocaust monument. Lectures by Rabbi Marc Angel and Dr. Aron Rodrigue culminated in an historic gala celebration at the Meydenbauer Center on August 22nd, 2010.
The search for a new Spiritual Leader continued through the Summer of 2011. Rabbi Frank Varon assisted the congregation with life cycle events while lay membership provided engaging sermons during Shabbat services. In the Winter of 2011 Rabbi Benjy Owen joined Rabbi Varon as an interim Rabbi. Rabbi Owen took over the task of providing sermons during Shabbat services and also offered a popular Shabbat afternoon class on the weekly reading of the Haftorah. Rabbi Ron-Ami Meyers commenced his service as our spiritual leader on August 1st of 2011. Rabbi Meyers and Rubisa Miriam have ten beautiful children, five boys and five girls. We look forward to joining with Rabbi Meyers and Rubisa Miriam in growing our community in wonderful ways.