Dear TBT members and friends in our community,
The TBT Board of Directors has chosen to respond to the current COVID-19 threat with an unprecedented move to cancel all community activities at Temple for the next 30 days, except for Shabbat services. For a community that thrives with dozens of gatherings each week, this was a hard decision, but we were guided by our Jewish values of prioritizing life and health and the well-being of our community. Further, as we watch organizations around us heed the call for social distancing, we know we can be effective if our community acts with a unified response, listening to the guidelines of national, state and local health officials.
The Board has also created a COVID-19 committee consisting of staff and Board members to continually evaluate the situation, and make decisions regarding continued cancellation, or reinstatement of activities.
In real terms this means that the Ventura County Film Festival, which was to open this weekend, will be postponed. The committee is currently reviewing summer dates. Please hold on to any tickets you have purchased and any refunds or exchanges that need to happen can be arranged when the new date for each movie is announced. We thank our Film Festival sponsors for their support; the Jewish Film Festival is a major fundraiser for TBT, and our annual budget counts on it.
The Temple will be open for Shabbat services, and Rabbi Lisa and Robin Faigin will continue to officiate. But you may also follow services on your computer or screen, via Zoom. An email about how to join services electronically will follow this email. WE HAVE CANCELLED OUR SHABBAT GUEST SPEAKER FOR TONIGHT (March 13).
Torah School is in the process of contacting teachers and putting in place possible home-based, computer-based learning for some of the grades. More on that will be shared with Torah School families.
For the next month, we are canceling:
- TBT Community Seder, on Wednesday, April 8
- Brotherhood Brunch on March 15 and April meeting
- Women of TBT programs, including the April 5 Women’s Seder, Ma Jong, Crafting
- Adult Education programs: Yiddish, short stories
- Community Programs we host: Bridge; Project Understanding Tutoring
What will continue:
- Shabbat evening and morning services on-site, with social distancing encouraged
- Bar and Bat Mitzvah tutoring- Cantor Michael will arrange facetime sessions with each student
- Offices will be open
- Children’s World Pre-School
- Tuesday Food Share- with modifications to reduce exposure
- Adult B’nai Mitzvah- Rabbi Lisa will be in email contact with class to determine future direction
We are deeply aware of the susceptibility of members of our community, because of existing health conditions, or age. Please minimize your visits to Temple if possible and use phone, email and mail to stay in touch!
We look forward to our being together as community, able to participate fully- and in good health- in all the things that make this a special and remarkable Jewish community.
Pam Small, President Rabbi Lisa Hochberg-Miller