Friday, March 13, 2020 /17 Adar, 5780
Parashat Ki Tisa Exodus 30:11-34:35
In keeping with the Purim tradition of delivering food baskets (mishloach manot) to friends, SPETY created beautiful packages which contained hamantaschen donated by members of our temple, snacks, and a hand-made note card. Earlier this week, seven temple families delivered these packages to twenty people in our community who are home-bound, or have trouble getting around. Often, families were blessed to sit down and get to know one another. In acting on the beauty of our Purim customs, participants were able to create sacred connections with people in meaningful ways, outside of our Temple’s walls.
With the onset of the coronavirus, many of us are quarantined, or are choosing to self-quarantine. In order to “lessen the curve” of the coronavirus and protect people in our community, we have postponed several Temple functions, and will be utilizing technology to gather people together.
We may not be gathering in our temple’s walls with regularity, but our community connections will not wane. In Pirkei Avot (Ethics of our Ancestors), Rabbi Hillel taught, “Do not distance yourself from community.” At a time when we need to have social distancing for sake of our health, there are ways that we can connect meaningfully.
We are in the process of creating a phone tree, so that we can reach out to our temple family members who are most vulnerable. If you are willing to participate in this phone tree, please email me. In addition, we are creating opportunities to connect through online classes, streamed services, and weekly emails, which we hope you utilize.
As we process and respond to the stress caused by COVID-19, let us remember that we are not alone, even when we are sequestered in our homes. We have one another.
Rabbi Cassi Kail