We must do what we can in difficult times. Temple Bat Yam services and events are suspended and our synagogue closed until at least 31 March.
Our lives will thus be disrupted. Our next first steps, both individually and as a congregation, are to change our usual routines in order to “flatten the curve”. Yesterday, Rabbi Stan Zamek of the United Jewish Congregation in Hong Kong, aptly wrote:
“Having lived up close and personal with Covid-19 before much of the rest of the world, we can offer our brothers and sisters abroad the benefit of our experience. We can tell them to take the social distancing and hygiene protocols medical professionals are calling for seriously. This is both the wise and the Jewish thing to do. . . . The faithful Jew may not ignore proven medical advice. In a time of pandemic, there is nothing advisory about public health measures. They are commandments.”
Our obligation to preserve our health and the health of those around us necessarily means that we cannot just now be together as a congregation as much as we would like. In the days and weeks ahead, you will be hearing more from Rabbi Evon, me and others with updates, information, suggestions and adjustments to a “new normal”. Today, please make the extra effort to stay connected to one another, and let us know about your concerns and plans while we carry on, as we do, Temple Bat Yam strong.