Argentine Rav Says Stay Home As Gov’t Allows Shuls To Reopen

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Buenos Aires (Image by Herbert Brant from Pixabay )

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The Argentine government made a decision last week to allow houses of worship to re-open but one Argentine Rav, Rav Issac Sacca, called on community members to continue davening at home except for those who have to say Kaddish for their parents, Kikar H’Shabbos reported.

According to the report, the government’s decision was made on the background of intense pressure from Muslims in the country and not due to the sudden safety of gatherings in the beleaguered country, which like many other Latin-American countries, has been hard-hit by the coronavirus.  In response to the pressure, the government made a decision to allow gatherings of up to ten people in adherence with health regulations.

Rav Sacca told Kikar H’Shabbat: “We’re very cautious in accepting the decision to re-open shuls since the infection rate is rising. I suggested to the community members that only ten men come to shul – those who are obligated to come such as those who need to say Kaddish.”

“I call for all community members to adhere to the principle of ‘V’nishmartem meod l’nafshoseichim‘ and to try to stay at home as much as possible and prevent infections within the community. The community has already suffered enough.”

Although Argentina implemented an early strict lockdown and has increased lockdown measures in recent weeks, the coronavirus infection rate continues to increase with a resulting devastating effect on the economy.

Jewish community leaders have stated that the “financial situation in the Jewish community is catastrophic.”

Argentina had recorded 158,334 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, the majority in the capital city of Buenos Aires, and 2,893 recorded deaths, although the actual numbers are predicted to much higher.

Other Latin-American countries grappling with particularly high rates of coronavirus infections are Brazil, Peru, Mexico and Chile.

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)