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Update on Beth Ahabah Services and Programming

07/22/2020 11:35:25 AM


Dear Congregation Beth Ahabah Family,

We are thinking of you all, and hope you are able to stay cool during this hot weather.
Since last month, the executive staff has met with the Return to In-Person Events Committee (a group of lay leaders and congregants, including medical advisors) to continue to examine our health and safety protocols and establish a plan for congregational activities.
Please carefully read the update below on several areas of Beth Ahabah Services and Programming. As always, our goal is to meet the needs of our community while upholding the Jewish value of pikuach nefesh (preserving life) and prioritizing everyone’s health and safety. We will continue to fully abide by governmental regulations and the guidelines provided by the CDC.

High Holy Days
Please fill out this important survey, if you have not already: In-Person Shabbat & High Holy Days Participation Survey (A number of the questions we have seen in the survey comments are answered in the FAQ on our HHD webpage.) We appreciate the feedback we have received so far and would like to hear from as many congregants as possible by Thurs. July 23!

Friday Night Shabbat Services In-Person Option (Postponed)
Due to the changing nature of the virus, and the recent upward trend in both national and local numbers, the committee has recommended we postpone the in-person option for Friday night Shabbat services, so Friday night services during August will continue to be virtual-only services streamed to our YouTube Channel. The committee will frequently revisit the data to determine when it would be advisable to offer in-person options in the Sanctuary. The staff and committee also plans to explore the possibility of occasional outdoor Shabbat offerings, depending upon the interest levels expressed in the In-Person Shabbat & High Holy Days Participation Survey.

B’nei Mitzvah Saturday Services
Saturday B’nei Mitzvah services will proceed as private events within established and CDC-compliant limitations (masks, distancing, and restricted number of in-person attendees). Options for B’nei Mitzvah families will include livestreaming the Saturday service publicly or privately. Until further notice, there will be no receptions, food service, or any other pre- or post-service gatherings on the synagogue campus.

Monday Night Beit Midrash Adult Educational Programming
Due to the risk factors associated with regular in-person gathering at this time, Monday Night Beit Midrash classes for adults will be offered as virtual classes through Zoom until further notice.

Mark Your Calendars:
First Day of Beit Midrash (both adult & teen) is Monday, October 19.

Religious School (PreK-10) Programming
Since 1846, Congregation Beth Ahabah has provided quality educational opportunities for its youngest members, even through very challenging times.

This fall the tradition continues. Congregation Beth Ahabah will provide an enriching, meaningful, enjoyable, and safe Religious School experience. In light of the ongoing challenges of the pandemic, and in consultation with our Return-to-In-Person-Events Committee, the decision has been made that Religious School (Pre-K through 10th Grade) will be virtual and online for at least the first 10 weeks: October through December. This will include weekly online classrooms and other resources for each grade level, Beth Ahabah generated content, as well as engagement with Rabbi Scott Nagel and Cantor Sarah Beck-Berman for both students and parents. Our staff is busy exploring many resources and options to make these weeks “Happy Sundays” (and Mondays) even if we are not on campus.

Mark Your Calendars:
• We are planning a Drive-By Party and Materials Pick-Up on Sunday, September 13 (alternative pick-up available Tuesday, September 15).
• First Day of Religious School is Sunday, October 4.
• First Day of Beit Midrash (both adult & teen) is Monday, October 19.

Click here to register for Religious School!


Thank you for your patience as we continue to navigate this uncertain time together. We look forward to resuming our many in-person activities as soon as it is safe to do so. If you have not already, check out the resources on our page Beth Ahabah Is Here For You, and thank you once again for your understanding and for being such an amazing community.

Rabbi Scott Nagel
The Sophia and Nathan Gumenick Senior Rabbi

Cantor Sarah Beck-Berman
Cantor and B’nei Mitzvah Coordinator

Heather Dinkin
Director of Congregational Operations

James Hensley
Facilities Manager

Sat, January 16 2021 3 Shevat 5781