With the increase in cases in the province, Dr Strang announced new measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 this week. While there are no faith gatherings at this time, we are still able to hold services over StreamSpot. We know that being able to facilitate prayer has been an important source of comfort for many throughout the last year. We receive direct communication from Dr. Strang’s office, and are always mindful to be compliant with all NS Public Health directives.
What has changed? Previously, we have been allowed a maximum of five plus an officiant in the sanctuary at one time. This week, the restrictions have been tightened further to five in attendance to lead the streamed service, provided we can maintain physical distancing and masking. The authorities have acknowledged the important role that congregations like the Shaar play in the life of Nova Scotians, and have encouraged us to provide opportunities for prayer and programs, within safety constraints. Even as we are now allowed a maximum of five people to lead these services, sadly we can no longer provide any spaces to those wishing to simply attend in person to daven in our sanctuary.
These are challenging times, and as Jews we can look to prayer as a means of celebration, of giving thanks, of solace, and to celebrate milestones. We are grateful that we can offer ways to join together in community virtually. We chose to use the StreamSpot platform because it is the most Shabbat-friendly option available; people can log-on before Shabbat begins, and keep the stream running untouched for the duration of Shabbat in order to respect the sanctity of the day.
Please join us over StreamSpot to participate in our 6:00 pm Kabbalat Shabbat service on Friday, and our 9:15 am Shaḥarit morning services by clicking here.
Joanna Mirsky Wexler
Rabbi Gary Karlin