A Washington D.C. Area Reform Synagogue  •  Location  •   (301) 587-2273 (CARE)  •  ten.molahselpmet@ofni

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Update on Current Synagogue Operations

Dear Temple Shalom Family,

It is with great excitement that we share this update about our current synagogue operations, including the resumption of some activities indoors. As our local Covid-19 cases continue to drop, vaccination rates continue to rise, and the anticipation of vaccines for 5-11-year-olds are on the horizon, we continue to explore ways to gather together as safely as possible. We look forward to many more opportunities to meet, worship, and gather together as a community.

Worship Updates

  • Shabbat Services will remain outdoors through December 4th. Regular Friday Evening Services will begin at 6 pm. First Friday Services on November 5th will include Tot Shabbat and begin at 5:30 pm, with the Family Service starting at 6:30 pm. December 3rd will begin with Tot Shabbat at 5:30 pm and the festivities will continue with Night of 1000 Menorahs and Consecration under the big tent at 6:30 pm.
  • Beginning with Shabbat on December 10th, and assuming no major spike in local Covid-19 cases, all worship will move indoors and Friday night services will start at 7:30 pm.
  • While the rates of spread are not high, masks remain encouraged, but optional for outdoor worship. Well-fitting masks will be required for all indoor worship. We will continue to provide masks for those who may have forgotten.
  • All services will continue to be offered via Zoom or LiveStream.

Indoor Meetings and Gatherings

  • Starting immediately, meetings may be held indoors at the discretion and comfort of the attendees. Events must be scheduled by Temple Staff. Please contactten.molahselpmet@yksmezs if you would like to schedule a meeting at the Temple.
  • Masks are required indoors. No food may be served or consumed at indoor programs at this time, but you may continue to have food outdoors.
  • Religious School will continue to meet outdoors and will follow operating procedures outlined in the Religious School Health and Safety Guidelines regarding cold and inclement weather. These Guidelines will be updated as Covid conditions continue to change.

Vaccines for 5-11 year olds

We are eagerly anticipating the FDA and CDC approval of the Pfizer vaccine for youth ages 5-11. Consistent with our synagogue-wide policy on vaccines, once the vaccine is approved for 5-11 year olds, we will be requiring all congregants and Early Learning Center (ELC) students who are eligible to be vaccinated in order to attend in-person events - including Religious School and the ELC. Further information will follow in the coming weeks.

Temple Shalom is a strong and vibrant community that has shown resilience, creativity, and patience as we have endured the Covid-19 pandemic together. Our Temple staff, lay leaders, and clergy have worked countless hours to ensure meaningful worship and programming, while balancing the health and safety of our community. We are thrilled to be entering a new phase of gathering together.

Please contact  ten.molahselpmet@yksmezs with any questions about these updates.

L’Shalom (In Peace),

Rabbi Rachel Ackerman, Senior Rabbi

Jeff Steger, President

Susan Goutos Zemsky, Executive Director

Peter Howard, Executive Vice-President

Karen Miller, Chair, Advisory Task Force on Continuing Operations

Lisa Heiser-Polin, ELC Director

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