The “New Normal” for Shul During the Yamim Noraim
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- This topic has 59 replies, 14 voices, and was last updated 2 years, 11 months ago by n0mesorah.
June 8, 2020 3:23 pm at 3:23 pm #1869104
We are about 3 months away from Rosh Hashanah. Although good progress is being made, there is zero liklihood we will have a safe and effective vaccine commercially available prior to the yom tovim. At best, we will have a better understanding of how the virus affects individuals of different demographic groups and perhaps some new drugs available fro treating those who are infected. That still leaves the question of whether there will be a return to packed shuls in September with little or no social distancing and no aggressive enforcement for facemasks. Under this scenario, will/should older yidden even be allowed to attend the davening, is there some special accommodation even possible for them, will women not be allowed to attend so the men can spread out more? What do you think the “new normal’ will be until we have vaccines and the risk factors have been materially reduced (although not really eliminated)? Obviously the answers will be radically different for small shtieblach versus the mega-shuls that can seat over a 1000 people, but its hard to see what will be the “norm” in 3 months.June 8, 2020 4:27 pm at 4:27 pm #1869261KeevesParticipant
As one who is over 65 and has several health issues (which, BH are being kept in check with meds, but that doesn’t mean I’m cured), I’ve been thinking a lot about this. I’ve been davening at home ever since the morning after Parshas Zachor, and continuing that through Tishrei is a real possibility. On Purim morning I did go to shul for Megillah reading, after davening at home to minimize my exposure. (Purim night I did go to minyan, because maariv is so short that it didn’t seem like a big deal at the time.) Some people (who are even more health-conscious than me) relied on heterim to hear the megilla by phone or internet, but that is not going to be even a possibility for Shofar on Rosh Hashana. Some people have their own shofar and know how to blow it, but I’m not one of those people. So I am imagining/hoping that there will be some scheduled tekios outside the shul that we can go to with our masks and standing apart from each other. Each shul’s rav will decide whether to blow the standard 100 kolos, or whether (to minimize everyone’s exposure) it should be cut down to 30 – or maybe even 10.June 8, 2020 4:27 pm at 4:27 pm #1869262
GH: Your last line sums it up, we dont have a clear crystal ball to know what will be in 3 months. Fauci and the CDC change things daily. My shul is at the point of rescinding their face mask policy.June 8, 2020 4:27 pm at 4:27 pm #1869266chymeeParticipant
As Trump would say WE WILL SEEJune 8, 2020 6:31 pm at 6:31 pm #1869300meir GParticipant
If things are as they are now, dont expect any differences on a ccommunal level individuals are free to adjust as necessary. WJune 8, 2020 7:37 pm at 7:37 pm #1869343
I keep hearing this, but every time I check the CDC website things are the same. People hear things on differently on the news, but it is just slanted journalism. Originally the CDC stated that face masks will not prevent you from getting coronavirus. That is still true. Therefore they recommended not wearing one to avoid a false sense of security. Once the pandemic was here, face masks were promoted as a means of slowing down transmission. Though social distancing is considered more efficient than masks. There is no solid study on davening inside, but it does not seem to be simple to achieve a “safe” shul.June 8, 2020 8:55 pm at 8:55 pm #1869380
Keeves: while a choleh in certain instances can have 30 kolos blown for them, there is no kulah for only 10. I dont know what rabanim will do but talking now is not going to mean anything if things change for the better two months from now.June 8, 2020 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm #1869405chashParticipant
heres this as an example, In the beginning of this virus the cdc stated that corona spreads through surface contact and not through inhaling, (remember all the “masks are so that you should not touch your face garbage?) now they list that as unlikely and they list as likely, airborne particles.
BTW that is the reason for the reversal on the recommendation to wear masks.June 8, 2020 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm #1869421
chash: Today the WHO announced another reversal, in that asymptomatic people actively infected with the novel coronavirus only very rarely will transmit the virus on to other people. As such, masks on people with no symptoms is less important than thought prior to today.June 9, 2020 1:07 am at 1:07 am #1869441Avi KParticipant
The Ashkenazi rav of PetachTikva said that peopel over 60 should get first dibs on limited minyanim both for honor and because this group has suffered more isolation. If there are special hours in stores for seniors and, conversely, youth minyanim, why not senior minyanim? Full disclosure: Iy”H I will be 66 next month.June 9, 2020 8:09 am at 8:09 am #1869448
Avi: Have your kids let you out of the house yet?June 9, 2020 8:13 am at 8:13 am #1869460
No! Asymptomatic means symptoms never develop. Most of the spread is still understood to be from patients who will have symptoms, but are not yet noticeably ill. This is what I mean. While this is a useful news item, it has no bearing on public health policy.June 9, 2020 8:14 am at 8:14 am #1869461
Every time I checked, spreading through touch was prefaced by “(it) may be possible”. The only significant change I’ve seen, is social distancing seems to be the most important measure now. This is because it is here and the goal is to the stop the spread. The CDC still advises against masks as a means to protect yourself. Masks are recommended to prevent spreading it to others.June 9, 2020 8:23 am at 8:23 am #1869492
Why don’t you get tested for the antibody? If you test positive it’s highly unlikely that you will catch it again and you can go to minyan without worries, just wear a face mask as a precuation.June 10, 2020 7:43 pm at 7:43 pm #1870172
Suppose you where in charge of a shul with 3000 seat capacity for Rosh Hashanah. Would you let anyone who claims they have antibodies into your shul? Face masks (Except medical grade.) do not help the wearer.June 10, 2020 11:44 pm at 11:44 pm #1870232
Though data are VERY limited, the vast majority of “older” individuals who have taken the antibody test do NOT appear to have have been infected by the virus without symptoms and thus rightfully should be concerned about future exposure (whether through davening in crowded shuls or any other venue where social distancing is not feasible). Again, its going to be very case-specific but maybe some of the larger shuls can block off seating for older daveners where perhaps every other seat is empty. A 5:30 AM “golden age/vasikim” minyan for rosh hashanah/yom kippur is not ideal but may be the only option in smaller shuls.June 11, 2020 9:19 am at 9:19 am #1870348
It doesn’t hurt to take an antibody test so that you will know.. If you stayed inside and had no contact with anyone you probably don’t have the antibodies. As far as blocking off every other seat you would need to block off about 75 percent of the seats in order to maintain social distancing. A 5:30 minyan is not an option as many wouldn’t get up that early. Remember people are paying for these seats A small private minyan less than 50 people is preferred as opposed to a large shul minyan and avoid talking to others in the aisle, lobby and courtyard of the shul as these are areas where it’s more likely to catch the diseaseJune 11, 2020 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm #1870415
@ Abba S, my neighbor stayed inside and had no contact with anyone and guess what? they had antibodies, I never got sick and had antibody count off the charts, go figure.
I think this whole discussion is moot because about 80% of the shuls are running full force and by the time Yomim Tovim roll along it will be a distant memory, with possible exceptions of one or two shuls in Riverdale and WoodmereJune 11, 2020 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm #1870425
A local shul seems to have anticipated the issue and will be holding an SDM (social distanced minyan) in the gym of a local private school. Some shuls have done this previously for overflow/non-members but I think you will see more of these types of arrangements this fall in school auditoriums and other public spaces that can be leased and are appropriate for davening.June 11, 2020 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm #1870479
Is the 5 Towns still holding form in prohibiting Minyanim?June 11, 2020 1:28 pm at 1:28 pm #1870504
Joseph: and what if they are? what does their decision for today say about what may be a different decision 3 months from now?June 11, 2020 3:34 pm at 3:34 pm #1870550
lot112: If there’s no vaccine or cure widely available before September, why would the 5 Towns permit Minyanim for the Yomim Norayim (with massive filled shuls) if they do not allow them altogether now?
What’s the difference between June and September.June 11, 2020 4:07 pm at 4:07 pm #1870611
CommonS Your neighber who tested positive for antibodies but stayed inside. Where did he get his food from? He either got it from the dilivery person or from the packaging of the food. While I agree with you that we can’t prodict the future, here in Midwood most of the shuls are requiring masks and social distancing.
LOT 112 Shuls need to prepare now for the Yamen Norian if they need to lease space hire ushers and or security.June 11, 2020 6:52 pm at 6:52 pm #1870734
@ Abba, ALL SHULS in Monsey are now fully open, some are enforcing masks and social distance most are not, and three weeks like this and no spikes, sorry to all Chicken LittlesJune 11, 2020 8:33 pm at 8:33 pm #1870791
Commonlackofsaychel: Most of the Arronites in Monsey are born with Covid19 antibodies (as distinct from the Zalmanites who generally test negative for the antibody) and are thus immune. Those who don’t have the antibody are doing their nagel vasser with a cocktail mix of HCQ with Zinc (as recommended by the Trump’s favorite doctor who recently announced he was leaving Monsey for greener pastures).June 12, 2020 8:20 am at 8:20 am #1870909
GH I think you are mixing up two communities Kiryas Joel which is currently called Town of Palm Tree in Orange County with Monsey which is in Rockland County.
CS I don’t know what is going on in other communities nor in all of Midwood but in the few that I attend masks and social distancing are required. Although enforcement is not what it used to be, more people are davening without masks and not told to leave. I have seen people recently asked to wear a mask or leave shul.June 12, 2020 9:04 am at 9:04 am #1871027
AbbaS: You wrote “LOT 112 Shuls need to prepare now for the Yamen Norian if they need to lease space hire ushers and or security.” This is my point, they may not need any of these by the time Alef Tishrei arrives and why cause already financially hurting institutions with an unnecessary expense.June 12, 2020 9:05 am at 9:05 am #1871070
Joseph: I saw an article quoting Rabbi Dr. Alan Glatt that restrictions are being eased in the five towns and he himself was able to attend a minyan Wednesday night.June 12, 2020 11:52 am at 11:52 am #1871101
lot112: What’s different in the 5 Towns now that they’re allowing Minyanim than two weeks ago on Shavuos when they didn’t allow them?June 12, 2020 11:52 am at 11:52 am #1871103
@chicken little a/k/a koton hatorah, Your poor attempt at juvenile humor does not dignify a responseJune 12, 2020 11:53 am at 11:53 am #1871108
@lowerTution, wow Rabbi Dr. Glatt just realized that 99% of all people tested this week in NYS were negative, I think YI of Woodmere should permanently move to be a virtual synagogue it much safer that way, no car crashes on the way to shul, No alcohol deaths from the kiddish club, no trips and falls on the premises by the elderly.
grow upJune 12, 2020 11:54 am at 11:54 am #1871129
Rabbi Dr. Aaron Glatt*June 16, 2020 6:36 pm at 6:36 pm #1873248
Joseph: I dont know why the rabbanim of the five towns have relaxed their views. They didn’t ask for my opinion.June 16, 2020 10:23 pm at 10:23 pm #1873283
Abba_S, you say it won’t hurt to take an antibody test “so you will know.” Know what? No reliable source has said that having antibodies guarantees you’re immune. I canceled an appointment to have an antibody test because I thought a positive result might tempt me to do riskier activities than the very limited things I do now.June 16, 2020 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm #1873296
YY- what could be risky if you have antibodies? You can’t give covid or get covid, what is the problem then?June 17, 2020 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm #1873509
@Yehudayona, even a better idea, put on a full bunny suit and go to a bunker in an island off the coast of New ZeelandJune 17, 2020 6:28 pm at 6:28 pm #1873736
Syag, then why will no reliable source say that the presence of antibodies means you’re immune?
commonsaychel, bunny suits are too hot. How would I get to the island?June 17, 2020 6:43 pm at 6:43 pm #1873748
The reliable sources do say it. The doctors and some medical articles will say that they have no recorded cases of someone getting infected twice. The media will not report it because it doesn’t align with the fear mongering they are using to keep you home. Same reason that they are reporting lots of new “cases” but stopped reporting new hospitalizations or deaths because those numbers aren’t quite scary enough.June 17, 2020 9:06 pm at 9:06 pm #1873815
To test Syag’s claim that the media “are reporting lots of new ‘cases’ but stopped reporting new hospitalizations or deaths because those numbers aren’t quite scary enough,” I went to Google News and searched for “COVID hospitalizations.” I found articles from diverse sources with headlines like “Texas coronavirus hospitalizations surge 11% in a single day,” “Texas and Arizona keep setting coronavirus hospitalization records,”, “Coronavirus hospitalizations rising in parts of California,” “Alabama hits all-time high in COVID-19 hospitalizations,” “Tennessee’s COVID hospitalizations are high and increasing,” “Reported coronavirus hospitalizations soar to another new high as NC mulls next phase,” “Georgia’s COVID cases, hospitalizations on the rise as state reopens.” All these headlines are from the last 48 hours. I leave it up to the reader to do something similar for COVID deaths — I’m tired of typing.June 17, 2020 9:07 pm at 9:07 pm #1873811
Here’s what the CDC says about antibody tests:
If you test positive
A positive test result shows you may have antibodies from an infection with the virus that causes COVID-19, or possibly from infection with a related virus from the same family of viruses (called coronavirus), such as one that causes the common cold.
We do not know yet if having antibodies to the virus that causes COVID-19 can protect someone from getting infected again or, if they do, how long this protection might last.
Talk with your healthcare provider about your test result and the type of test you took to understand what your result means. Your provider may suggest you take a second type of antibody test to see if the first test was accurate.
You should continue to protect yourself and others since it’s possible you could get infected with the virus again.
If you have no symptoms, you likely do not have an active infection and no additional follow-up is needed.
If you work in a job where you wear personal protective equipment (PPE), continue wearing PPE.
If you have symptoms and meet other criteria for testing, you would need another type of test called a viral test. This test identifies the virus that causes COVID-19.
This test uses respiratory samples, such as a swab from inside your nose, to confirm COVID-19.
An antibody (blood) test cannot tell if you are currently sick with COVID-19.
You might test positive for antibodies even if you never had symptoms of COVID-19. This can happen if you had an infection without symptoms (also called an asymptomatic infection).
If you test negative
You may not have had COVID-19 before. Talk with your healthcare provider about your test result and the type of test you took to understand what your result means.
You could still have a current infection.
The test may be negative because it typically takes 1 to 3 weeks after infection to develop antibodies. It’s possible you could still get sick if you have been exposed to the virus recently. This means you could still spread the virus.
Some people may take even longer to develop antibodies, and some people may not develop antibodies.
If you have symptoms or develop symptoms after the antibody test and you meet other criteria for testing, you would need another type of test called a viral test. This test uses respiratory samples, such as a swab from inside your nose, to confirm COVID-19. An antibody (blood) test cannot tell if you are currently sick with COVID-19.
Regardless of whether you test positive or negative, the results do not confirm whether or not you are able to spread the virus that causes COVID-19. Until we know more, continue to take steps to protect yourself and others.June 17, 2020 9:08 pm at 9:08 pm #1873769
@ Yehudayona, private jet with you in a sealed box so you don’t pick up germs along the wayJune 17, 2020 9:25 pm at 9:25 pm #1873839
Sorry you had to dig so deep to get info. Not sure why that doesn’t raise an eyebrow.
Do you know how much typing i had to do to find out which states were spiking?
You may want to try real life conversations with doctors, you may be surprised what they have to say.June 18, 2020 9:44 am at 9:44 am #1873947
People get the flu vaccine yet still get the flu. By YY’s logic that antibodies don’t prevent one from catching the corona virus then the antivaxxers are correct as vaccines are worthless.June 18, 2020 10:03 am at 10:03 am #1873988
Nom- ” Originally the CDC stated that face masks will not prevent you from getting coronavirus. That is still true.”
It is actually not true. Dr. Fauci admit straight up (I didn’t read it, I saw it) that they told people that because they were afraid that there would end up being a shortage of masks for the health care providers.
Abba – why would this NOVEL coronavirus scenario have any bearings on other diseases? Different diseases have different levels of immunity. That is why you can catch some diseases only once or twice, and others repeatedly. When I had salmonella I was told I would be immune for 5 years. The claim of the anti vaxxers gets no validity from this case.June 18, 2020 10:21 am at 10:21 am #1873993
Commonsaychel: At least Rabbi Dr. Glatt has both smicha and a medical degree backing up his opinions (even if you disagree with him). Unless you think that heading the infectious disease team at a major hospital makes him less qualified than Fauci.June 18, 2020 10:33 am at 10:33 am #1874001
Also, there are many different strains of flu. Each year, they make assumptions about which strains are more likely to occur, and those strains are what’s in that year’s vaccine. Sometimes they’re wrong, and other strains prevail. Also, the effectiveness of antibodies declines over time, which is why you need booster shots for some diseases. For example, I believe the recommendation is that you get a tetanus shot every 10 years. If you want more information, the CDC has a webpage “Key Facts About Seasonal Flu Vaccine” that explains this stuff.
To bring it back to COVID, this disease is so new that there’s a lot that’s not known about it, including how effective its antibodies are in conferring immunity, at what level, and for how long.June 18, 2020 3:18 pm at 3:18 pm #1874122
@ Lower tution, hate to break it to you but South Nassau is hardly a major hospital, in fact is from the bottom 1/3 of bed capacity in NYS. Should I be given a choice of South Nassau or LIJ that is 8 miles away I would pick LIJ without a shadow of a doubt and so would 90% of the people in the 5 towns.June 18, 2020 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm #1874257
It’s rather strange to rate a hospital’s “majorness” based on bed capacity. Are you claiming that the head of infectious diseases at LIJ disputes Rabbi Dr. Glatt?June 19, 2020 8:19 am at 8:19 am #1874289
The point I am trying to make is that having the antibodies makes you ummune from that strain of the virus. It is possible to catch a different strain of the virus. This is the same as the flu where you can take a vaccine for one strand but catch a different strand. Atleast I understand the antivaxxers as they claim the vaccines are harmful Ttaking an antibody test cost you nothing,. There will be masks and social distancing sio you wouldn’t catch the disease at the lab so what do you have to lose. There is no harm unless you consider the knowledge that you maybe immune harmful.June 19, 2020 8:22 am at 8:22 am #1874300
In general, the larger hospitals have access to greater resources, deal with a wider range of cases and attract the more experienced medical professionals than smaller local hospitals who generally transfer their more complex and critical cases to large facilities with the needed expertise. An exception to this general rules are public charity hospitals, many of which are “larger”: but severely underfunded and do not attract top of the line medical professionals.
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