5 User photos
Ofelia Neagu · Married on 11/08/2019
One of a kind Rabbi
My husband and I highly recommend Rabbi Steve. He is very kind, caring, funny and happy person. Our ceremony was beautiful and perfect. Everything went smooth and we couldn't be more happy!Sent on 12/10/2019
Joy · Married on 09/29/2019
A True Blessing!
Rabbi Steve was an absolute lifesaver. We'd originally asked my uncle to officiate but due to unforeseen circumstances outside of his control, he ended up having to back out on his initial agreement and we were left scrambling to find an officiant with only a few short months left before the wedding. My (now) husband is Jewish and we loved the idea of honoring that tradition on our wedding day. The date we chose for our wedding happened to be Rosh Hashanah which, while beautifully symbolic, made finding a rabbi willing & available to officiate that day particularly challenging. Rabbi Steve was so warm, understanding & supportive, from the moment I first reached out to him with our plight, to the day he invited us to meet with him in his home & treated us to delicious homemade goodies from his wife, to the ceremony itself. We wanted someone who could strike that delicate balance between the serious & sacred and the playful & joyful, and he did that to a tee. More than one of our guests commented that it was the best wedding they'd been to. We could not recommend Rabbi Steve more highly and are so grateful he was willing and able to officiate for us!Sent on 12/11/2019
Daniel · Married on 06/22/2019
The best Rabbi we could have asked for
Rabbi Steve was awesome to work with. He took the time to explain everything. He was flexible on details we wanted to include or not include. Rabbi Steve was incredible and I would recommend him to anyone.Sent on 12/09/2019
Alicia · Married on 06/15/2019
Rabbi Steve is awesome!
Rabbi Steve is incredibly kind and thoughtful. He made the effort over many months to make sure he knew us as a couple, what we loved and respected about each other, and our dreams for our life together, and he helped us understand the Jewish traditions of marriage and everything involved in making it happen. 100% recommend!Sent on 07/14/2019
Jordan Epstein · Married on 06/15/2019
Rabbi Steve is incredibly kind and thoughtful. He genuinely wants to get to know you and your partner and build a real relationship, and his service has just the right level of tradition, length, and fun. We are very grateful Rabbi Steve was a part of our wedding, and we highly recommend!Sent on 12/10/2019
Jordan Singer · Married on 06/08/2019
Rabbi Steve was wonderfully attentive, responsive and thoughtful. He listened to everything we said and made our ceremony truly personal and special. He made our special day even more special. Do yourself a favor and book Rabbi Steve.Sent on 12/09/2019
Kathryn & Travis Lopez · Married on 06/08/2019
Rabbi Steve was one of the main highlights of our wedding!
He taught us many important life lessons as we were stepping into marriage while making all of the legal paper work parta effortless. He helped us feel relaxed while providing quality guidance. All along the way, Rabbi Steve encouraged us to make our wedding ceremony unique to our vision while incorporating many meaningful traditions. Thank you so much!Sent on 12/16/2019
Andrew Malzberg · Married on 05/18/2019
Rabbi Steve is the Best Rabbi for your Jewish Wine Country Wedding
My husband and I could not recommend Rabbi Steven more highly. As a mixed faith gay couple, there is a decent amount of trepidation that can arise when selecting an officiant for your wedding. However, Rabbi Steve was warm, welcoming, and open. Throughout the process, Rabbi Steve, worked with us to create a beautiful wedding ceremony that was tailored to what we want. He always provided the different options, but allowed us, the couple, to make all of the decisions. Rabbi Steve also put in a lot of effort by meeting us multiple times to get know Joey and I to ensure the ceremony felt personal. If you're looking for a Jewish officiant in Wine Country, Rabbi Steve is your guy!Sent on 01/03/2020
Stephanie · Married on 09/02/2017
Rabbi Steve is fantastic. My husband was raised Catholic and I was raised Jewish. I wanted to keep some Jewish traditions around during the ceremony and reception. A family friend had given me Rabbi Steve's information, after they saw Rabbi officiate a wedding in Sonoma. So when it came time to chose an officiant for our wedding, I knew Rabbi Steve was the Rabbi for us. Rabbi worked with us to figure out what aspects were important to me and and which ones were not. He also helped explain certain traditions to my husband, which came very helpful to him. My husband and I were in Sonoma for the weekend a month before our wedding, Rabbi and his wife welcomed us into their home. This allowed us to discuss more details about the ceremony face to face instead of Skype or over the phone. The Wine Country Rabbi is ready to work around any challenges of a Jewish wedding and what works with social norms of a wedding.Sent on 04/05/2018
Our wedding ended up falling on one of the hottest days on record in Berkeley, California. Our venue was a historical site therefore there was no air conditioner inside. When it came time for the ceremony, Rabbi was able to cut parts of the ceremony to keep our guests a bit more comfortable so they didn't have to sit so long. He discussed with my husband and I beforehand, I agreed with him.
I would recommend the Wine Country Rabbi to anyone who is planning a traditional Jewish wedding, an interfaith wedding, or any kind of wedding.
Kathleen · Married on 07/23/2017
Rabbi Steve is amazing! As an interfaith couple, we were not sure we would be able to find a rabbi willing to work with us for our wedding. Not only did Rabbi Steve work with us, he met with us several times to get to know us and invited us to his home, along with our Catholic priest, to design a personalized Jewish/Christian wedding ceremony. He explained all the Jewish wedding traditions, helped us find all the items we needed including a beautiful ketubah and mezuzah, and took care of sending in our paperwork to register the marriage with the state. Most importantly, he did it all with humor, patience, and grace. If we didn't live so far from him, we would love to attend his community in Wine Country! Regardless of distance, we now feel Rabbi Steve is "our rabbi" and we will contact him in the future for any needs we have.Sent on 06/13/2018
Zia · Married on 06/11/2017
Rabbi Steve was very accommodating and understanding towards our unique ceremony. My husband is Jewish, and I am not. With quality questions, and a kind professionalism, he was empathetic and found that our marriage would work well with his services and guidance. We look back at our wedding day with joy and love, and Rabbi Steve was an essential piece of our joyous day. He made us both feel comfortable and relaxed with the process.Sent on 04/01/2018
Alisa · Married on 05/28/2017
Rabbi Finley was absolutely wonderful to work with. We had interviewed several rabbis and it was extremely important to find someone who we connected with spiritually, emotionally and intellectually. Rabbi Finley did an amazing job helping us focus on the essence of our relationship and what it meant to become married. He was kind, open-minded, understanding, and helped us dive into all of the important issues. We had several meaningful conversations leading up to the wedding. The ceremony itself flowed so well that we had multiple people say it was the most moving wedding they had attended. It was heartfelt, funny, and soulful. We feel very close to Rabbi Finley and look forward to maintaining our relationship for years to come.Sent on 09/29/2017
Simmon · Married on 12/31/2016
Rabbi Steve was amazing in every way! We were getting married in Napa via Los Angeles, and finding a local Rabbi can be challenging, especially on New Years Eve! Finding Rabbi Steve made our search worthwhile. He is personal, he is available and he wants to know about the couple he is talking with. We began over a few FaceTime chats, followed by a few in person meetings. His commentary during the ceremony was personal and funny. We along with our guests had a fun time, the pace was perfect and everyone felt like they were a part of the ceremony. Thank you Rabbi Steve for making our amazing evening all the more special and personalized.Sent on 03/14/2017
gabby · Married on 11/17/2016
We couldn't be happier with Rabbi Steve Finley. He was a fantastic choice to officiate our wedding in Cabo. He is very professional and really cares for your event. He took the time to Skype us a few times to get to know us and to understand exactly what we wanted. He was also very flexible with our schedules. Everyone of my friends and family had nothing but positive things to say about our ceremony. Thank you for making my ceremony perfect Rabbi.Sent on 12/27/2016
Shirley · Married on 04/16/2016
Rabbi Steve Finley officiated our wedding at Vintners Inn in April 2016. We couldn't have asked for a better officiant. He had the perfect mix of heartfelt sincerity, personalization, explained things really well, and threw in a touch of humor too. The length of the ceremony was perfect and the ceremony was one of the main highlights in large part because of him. We were super comfortable with him too because of our handful of skype meetings and discussions leading up to it. Couldn't have asked for more. We highly recommend!Sent on 04/21/2016
Paul · Married on 03/20/2016
Rabbi Finley officiated our wedding last month. We are from out of the area and were planning a destination wedding and had no prior experience with Rabbi Finley. When we first me Rabbi Finley he made us feel comfortable. We were extremely happy with all of the services provided by Rabbi Finley. He took the time to get to know us as a couple and to plan the service to our religious preferences and desires. He made some great suggestions and was available when we needed to speak with him. The service was excellent and everyone at the wedding felt like we had known the Rabbi for many years. We highly recommend Rabbi Finley and are sure any couple would be happy with the service.Sent on 04/17/2016
Michae · Married on 02/12/2016
RABBI FINLEY IS THE BEST!Sent on 04/04/2016
Rabbi Finley was fantastic. From the moment of our first skype call (From Chicago to Sonoma!) we knew we had found the perfect rabbi for our family only ceremony down in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Rabbi Finley is beyond anything we could have asked for.
From our regular Skype calls, "getting to know you", personalization of the ceremony, and everything in between, Rabbi Finley was the best. When it came time for the actual ceremony, things couldn't have gone better.
We can't thank and recommend Rabbi Finley enough! THANK YOU!!!
Jonathan · Married on 10/18/2015
If there was a title to this review it would be "the ceremony that went beyond anything we could have dreamed". My wife and I really can't sing enough of Rabbi Steve's praises for what he did for us. He was more than an officiant - he was a confidant, a guide and someone that helped to ensure that was crafted would give us everything we possibly could have imagined. And the proof wasn't just in how we felt about the outcome - it was the literal outpouring of our guests that said that it was THE or amongst the most beautiful ceremonies they'd ever witnessed.Sent on 11/01/2015
And to be frank, we didn't propose an easy job. My wife and I come from two different cultures, two different areas (neither or which was wine country where we were getting married), two different religions, and had guests who spoke two different languages (English and Spanish). Rabbi Steve was always thoughtful and helpful in our discussions as we worked together to shape what the ceremony would look like, what traditions would be incorporated and how we would be inclusive of both of our cultures and faiths. But more than that, he was a guide - providing not so much the answers but the wisdom to allow us to really consider what was important and why. In the end our ceremony featured three different languages (English, Spanish and Hebrew - with a little bit of French thrown in by the two of us), and showed to all of the family and friends the values of what we most wanted to exhibit - an openness, an inclusiveness that values diversity and commonalities of our faiths as we bring them together in the union of a single family. I didn't know this when we first started working with Rabbi Steve - I didn't think we could even achieve something like this. And now I don't believe we could have achieved it without him.
I have nothing but the greatest admiration for him as both a man and a religious leader. If you are considering him for your wedding, please feel free to ask him to put you in touch with us.
User5526077 · 2+ years ago
Rabbi Steve officiated our September wedding in Sonoma. He was a pleasure to work with and really took the time to listen to our ideas and preferences. He is flexible and his knowledge, experience and kindness always showed through. I highly recommend working with Rabbi Steve. He went above and beyond by spending extra time talking to us and preparing us for the wedding. He put everything in perspective. His skills are truly invaluable and makes for a very comfortable and smooth ceremony experience.Sent on 10/15/2015
Rebecca · Married on 08/08/2015
Rabbi Steve of Congregation Shir Shalom is a warm, kind, caring and knowledgeable Rabbi. We love him! He was open to our ideas and so very helpful in providing guidance for the ceremony AND our marriage. Also, my husband isn't Jewish and Rabbi Steve was not only happy to marry us, he also worked extra hard to make my husband feel welcome and embraced by the community. We love him so much that we will rely on his help again for our baby naming ceremony this fall, too. I can't say enough good things about Rabbi Steve :)Sent on 08/13/2016
User5325479 · 2+ years ago
My wife and I are from Houston, but got married at a vineyard in Napa. We didn't know any rabbis in northern California and found Rabbi Steve just by a simple google search. We were extremely pleased with him. We are both conservative and he performed a traditional conservative ceremony, but was extremely flexible and took our likes/dislikes into account when planning the ceremony. He also came up with some unique ideas that we incorporated that were a big hit (for instance, we signed the Ketubah during the actual ceremony in front of all our guests).Sent on 08/07/2015
In the months leading up to the wedding, we had a few telephone and skype conferences with Rabbi Steve. They were not inconvenient in any way. He took a lot of the information he learned about us during those conferences to incorporate some nice personal info into the ceremony that made the whole affair very warm. Typically, wedding guests comment about how much fun they had, how great the food was, etc., but the ceremony was sort of an afterthought. A lot of our guests talked about how great the ceremony was. The fact that they took the time to comment on this confirms he did a great job. The ceremony lasted about 35 minutes. I would recommend Rabbi Steve to anyone getting married in wine country.
Hannah · Married on 06/28/2015
We loved working with Rabbi Steve Finley. He was very supportive and easy to work with. He listened to our wants and needs and did not judge us. He took the time to get to know us so that his service had a more personal touch. We didn't feel like strangers under the chuppah; we felt like we had a friend leading our ceremony. His service was beautiful. Both our Jewish and non-Jewish friends had nothing but good things to say about it. We hope to stay friends with Rabbi Steve in the years to come and will definitely be recommending him to others.Sent on 08/20/2015
Cameron · Married on 06/14/2015
Rabbi Steve officiated our wedding in June of 2015. He helped to create a beautiful ceremony for us that we will remember for the rest of our lives. He made the time to get to know us and understand what we wanted in our ceremony. Being an interfaith couple, Rabbi Steve respected both cultures and did a great job including everyone in the decision making. Rabbi Steve's wife Yaffa even helped us create our Ketubah. We were thrilled to have Rabbi Steve officiate our wedding!Sent on 07/27/2015
Haley · Married on 05/16/2015
Rabbi Steve is absolutely wonderful! Working with him and embarking on the journey of marriage with him was so special. If you are looking for a Rabbi that will care about you as a couple and make your day incredibly personal, then look no further. My now husband and I moved to the bay area about two years before our wedding and did not have a Rabbi in the area. We were at a loss of how to even begin the search! Thankfully Rabbi Steve had recently moved to the area and we were connected to him. As soon as we spoke to him on the phone, we knew our search was over. We were so happy when he mentioned he really likes to get to know the couples beforehand. A couple of weeks later we met with Rabbi Steve and his wife, Yaffa. It was clear he wanted our day to be perfect and feel customized to our preferences, which was really important to us given my husband is not Jewish. He helped create the perfect ceremony and provided explanations for our programs so everyone could understand the Jewish traditions we did include. My parents and I could not have been happier with our ceremony. He made it so personal and we felt such a great connection to him. We even received numerous compliments from our guests about how amazing they thought Rabbi Steve was!! I honestly can't recommend him enough (if you couldn’t tell)! And, even though our wedding is now ovSent on 07/27/2015
jenna · Married on 09/20/2014
Rabbi Finley did an incredible job with our wedding. He was patient, knowledgeable, and thoughtful. He took time to get to know us and teach us Jewish traditions as we got closer to our big day. He helped us pick out a beautiful ketubah and brought both my mother in-law and mother to tears of joy both the day of and the practice beforehand. We had an amazing experience with him and were so grateful that he made our wedding so special. Thank you Rabbi!Sent on 08/03/2015