Meet the Canadian who hung up the first mezuzah in Girona’s Jewish Quarter since 1492

Leah Stoch Spokoiny in the old city of Girona, Spain, in 2013. (Supplied photo)

When Leah Stoch Spokoiny moved to Girona, halfway between Barcelona and the French border, in the heart of Catalan, she finally felt at home. The smells, food and social norms connected with her immediately, even though she wound up there almost by chance.

The irony in her feeling at home is that she sticks out—not just as a Canadian, but as one of perhaps 50 Jewish residents in the city of 100,000 people. Despite Girona being the hometown of the Ramban, Rabbi Moses ben Nachman, today it has barely any Jews living there, especially in its historic Jewish Quarter.

That is, until Leah moved in.

Since nailing up perhaps the Jewish Quarter’s first mezuzah since 1492, she has joined the board of the city’s Jewish community, planning communal events and promoting her people’s history in the region. She joins Yehupetzville as the first guest in our second season, which will feature Jews living in small communities beyond Canada’s shores, anywhere around the world.


Yehupetzville is hosted by Ralph Benmergui. Michael Fraiman is the producer and editor. Our music was arranged by Louis Simão and performed by Louis Simão and Jacob Gorzhaltsan. Our sponsor is PearTree Canada, which you can learn more about at This show is a member of The CJN Podcast Network. To learn how to support the show by subscribing to this podcast, watch this video.