UPDATED August 9, 2021
A year ago last March Temple Beth Shalom closed its building to visitors, due to the COVID-19 crisis. We took this step to protect the health of our members and others who may have wished to join us. During the shutdown we have had the services of Rabbi Carl Choper to help us through this difficult time. Rabbi Choper has also been leading services, on Zoom, every other Friday at 7:15.
Our plans for 5782 includes having Rabbi Choper lead our High Holiday Services in the Sanctuary at TBS. We have assembled the technology and a team to simultaneously host these Services on Zoom and livestream them on YouTube. We expect participants of these services to be physically in the Sanctuary, in their homes, or in group settings.
As with last year, 5781, we have dispensed with ticketing for services. But we are still welcoming donations. And as with last year, we are asking all participants to register. Some of this is to ensure everyone can participate in the way that best suits them, and part of this is for security reasons.
We are now confronting the upcoming High Holidays under changed circumstances. The emergence of highly effective vaccines have given us a new tool, in addition to masks and social distancing, to fight this pandemic. Unfortunately, not enough of us are getting vaccinated to declare the pandemic over in our area. In addition, a highly contagious variant of the COVID virus, Delta, has emerged as the dominant strain. Public health advice has been fluid of late and we, like other congregations, are trying to figure out what we should do and shouldn’t do to carry out our mission and keep people healthy.
For those attending in person, indoors, we are asking that everyone be vaccinated. (For those not vaccinated, we invite them to participate on Zoom.) Everyone will be required to wear a mask in the Sanctuary. The pews are set up to socially distance by family pod. We do not take these measures lightly, but we don’t want anyone who comes into our Sanctuary to expose themselves to any unnecessary COVID risks.
Of one thing we are certain. If you have not yet been vaccinated and are eligible to do so, please get vaccinated. TBS supports the CDC recommendations and the recommendations from the PA Department of Health. If you have questions about getting vaccinated, talk with your doctor or medical provider.
Please continue to monitor our website, and Facebook page for updates.