CLEVELAND — The Temple-Tifereth Israel, a Reform Jewish synagogue in Beachwood, announced Thursday that due to the rising number of COVID-19 cases in Northeast Ohio and the omicron variant surging, it will be ending all of its in-person programs and switch to online worship and learning for the next three weeks.
Beginning Thursday until Jan. 13, the synagogue will only offer online worship and learning opportunities, with Shabbat Services being livestreamed on it's website.
The Temple-Tifereth Israel cited the need to ease the burden on healthcare workers and overwhelmed hospital systems by doing their part to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
Throughout this pandemic, The Temple-Tifereth Israel has been guided by core Jewish values in caring for and serving our clergy and staff, congregants, and members of the community at large. At this time, given the virulence of this disease and the increased difficulty in distinguishing between the infected and the healthy, and out of concern for so many who are vulnerable in our midst, we must be guided by the commandments not to place a stumbling block before the blind, and to facilitate healing and the administration of healthcare for others. We must answer the call to exercise greater responsibility and care for each other and take to heart the commandment to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.
In their announcement. The Temple-Tifereth Israel urged its members to wear face masks and socially distance strictly, and also urged the community to get vaccinated and boosted if their have not already done so.
"Vaccination would enhance your personal immunity, diminish the severity of the disease should you contract this virus, and reduce the public health risks for our entire community. We call upon all to recognize the sanctity of every life, the Jewish obligation to maintain our health and well-being, the urgent need for solidarity, and act accordingly. Together, we can combat this pandemic and reduce its impact upon our lives. We must," the synagogue said in a statement.
The Temple-Tifereth Israel said that it will continue to re-evaluate the situation on an ongoing basis.
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