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From Our President, September 3, 2021

09/04/2021 11:55:07 AM


Michelle Bannon

Next Monday evening we will gather together on Erev Rosh Hashanah to begin observing the holiest days of the Jewish year.

Gathering together in this time of Covid has a different meaning. Last year, Covid vaccines weren’t available, and the end of the pandemic was nowhere in sight. Aliyahs and other honors were prerecorded. High Holiday books were distributed. Only a few of us were present in the synagogue on the actual holidays while everyone else attended services online.

Only two months ago, our spirits rose. We thought we were seeing the end of this horrific plague which has brought untold grief and loss to millions around the world. Yet, here we are again. Numbers of Covid cases are rising and hospitals are full. Fear of infection or spreading the infection unknowingly has returned full force. In spite of that, some things are better. Effective vaccines are available at no cost, and scientists have learned much more about the Covid-19 virus. New forms of treatment have decreased the mortality rate, particularly in those who are fully vaccinated.

As a result, we are able to worship together, which some of us will do in our sanctuary. Others will join us virtually. We have adapted our thinking and our behaviors by limiting the circle of family and friends we spend time with, wearing masks, and staying home more. Only immediate family members get hugs and kisses. Although we are weary, I and many others have noticed an unexpected benefit: a renewed appreciation of the lives we have, for the nature around us, and the blessings of home, country, and community.

This Rosh Hashanah I will appreciate, more than ever, my husband, my family, and my Bnai Israel community. I will be thankful that I am not lonely, hungry, homeless, or wondering how to pay my bills. I will think about how blessed I am to live in this country, to have access to the Covid vaccine when so many others in the world do not. I am thankful for living in a country that was willing and able to subsidize the incomes due to the pandemic.

I pray that this pandemic will end soon. I look forward once again to hugging my friends and fellow congregants and sharing a smile with others, even strangers - without a face mask on. But I also will remember what I have learned during these difficult days: We are all stronger than we think. We will persevere. We will survive.

Richard and I wish all of you good health, happiness and

L’Shanah Tovah, Tikatavu, a very blessed New Year.

Stay Safe & Shabbat Shalom,


Tue, June 18 2024 12 Sivan 5784