Synagogues hoped to be in person this year. Now they're not so sure.

August 18, 2021

Two weeks ago, Rabbi Steven Engel and his staff at Congregation of Reform Judaism in Orlando, Florida, had a solid pandemic safety plan for the best-attended services of the year: Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, and Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.

The plan called for:

  • Doubling the number of services to allow the congregation’s 1,500 members to distance from one another.
  • Members only in attendance.
  • Advance reservations required.
  • Outdoor-only services for unvaccinated children.
  • No members on the bimah, or podium, except the rabbi and cantor.

Now his synagogue is back to watching the numbers and will revise as needed.

Source: Synagogues hoped to be in person this year. Now they're not so sure.