Coronavirus Updates


Posted March 31, 2020

In this difficult time of isolation, it is hard to remember that you are really not alone.  But, as a member of Beth Israel SCC, that is certainly true…you are not alone.

The leadership of the congregation has organized a variety of phone calls, just to be in touch with our “family”.  And our Sisterhood and Men’s Club have also reached out to their members.   These calls will be made again and again, to convey the warm connection we all have with our temple.

We have begun to experiment with doing classes and services via such platforms as Zoom, and our tech team has been mastering the behind-the-scenes work it takes to mount these.

In the coming weeks, you can expect a weekly Shabbat evening experience on Fridays, a Passover seder on April 8, and classes on Thursdays and maybe even on Tuesdays.  We hope to offer Torah study as well, perhaps on Shabbat afternoon.

A few congregants have offered their services if people need grocery shopping done, or prescriptions picked up; if you need that or some other kind of help, please let  our rabbi know, and she will put you in touch with someone who can help.

And please watch for emails with specific information for all we will be doing over these next weeks.  Check our website as well, for updates and other important details.

As this process drags on, keep in mind that the sun is still shining, the birds are still singing, and we have each other.  We may be keeping our physical distance right now, but our spiritual and emotional connection is strong, and it will see us though this strange experience.

Our temple building is waiting for us to return, and return we surely will.  In the meantime, we are demonstrating that a congregation is not about a building but rather about its people.   And Beth Israel’s people are the best.

Posted Monday, March 23, 2020

Detailed directions to listen to Shabbat Services and classes by telephone and detailed directions to watch Shabbat Services and classes by computer, smart phone or ipad will be sent by email.

Posted March 17, 2020 from Rabbi Carla

we are happy to tell you that we are in the process of setting up some connectivity via electronics during this time of social isolation and apprehension.

for thursday afternoon of this week…3/19 at 3:00 pm…our usual time slot…we will do a phone conference call...tomorrow, you will receive an email with instructions on how to participate in this….the email will come from nina malinak.…watch for it.

it is my intention this thursday to spend some time checking in with folks on the call, and looking for some creative ways to deal with the social isolation we are engaged in as a preventive approach to the spread of the coronavirus. i know some people are becoming depressed or anxious, and we can help each other by connecting in this way.

we are also at work on a skype group chat …when that is ready, we will let you know…by email, from nina.  i will use that, hopefully next week, 3/26, for a class on the meaning of pesakh in these tough times… and how to celebrate that.

so take heart…your temple is working on how to help you get through this challenging experience.

if you need something, please let me know, and we’ll do what we can to help you.

rabbi carla freedman


Posted March 15, 2020 from Rabbi Carla

  1. due to the coronavirus, all classes are suspended this week. March 15-21 and for the foreseeable future.
  2. ditto, regarding services.
  3. this virus is badly timed for 2 of our most senior people...marianne finke will turn 99 on the 19th, and nelson grimm (who has moved with his wife ida to ocala, to be close to their daughter) will turn 98 on the 22nd.

you can do a great mitzvah by sending a card or note to them, or by calling to wish them happy birthday…

Posted March 16th from Rochelle Lafer

By a unanimous vote of the Board of Directors of Beth Israel the decision has been made to cancel the seder scheduled for April 8th, the first night of Passover.  This is being done in order to keep all of our congregants safe.

All checks for this event have already been deposited.  When we are in a position to gather as a group again, Diane Posner will be refunding money in cash, instead of writing over 50 checks from the Temple account.  Please be patient.

If you or a congregant that you know of is in need of help during this crisis please let me or any of the other members of the Board know and we will do what we can to help out.

Please stay safe.


Posted March 16th from Barbara Grossman, Sisterhood President

The Temple has canceled the Seder for Passover and we are cancelling the Passover Celebration scheduled for Tuesday, April 14th at 1:00 PM.


there are some things to watch on netflix if you have that service:

fauda…an israeli-produced series, now in its 4th season, about an israeli counter-terrorist squad and the palestinian terrorists they battle…hebrew, with subtitles, or english with hebrew subtitles.

shtisel….another israeli production, with subtitles…about the life of a hasidic family and community.

spy…a series about eli cohen, the israeli spy in damascus…based on a true story.

there are also some features about the mossad, israel’s legendary secret service…some are documnetaries and some are made-for-tv programs.

and on amazon prime, if you have that, you can watch hunters, about some contemporary folks chasing down nazis among us.

if you haven’t seen denial, about professor deborah lipstadt’s legal battle in britain, with a holocaust denier, that movie is also available online.

anyone who has other jewish or isareli-themes series or movies to recommend is welcome to send me the info and i will distribute it, so that we keep learning and being entertained in this strange moment we are living through…