What a blessing it was to welcome back Mel Cohen and Dan Asia to the Great Room at Handmaker Jewish Services for Aging for Shabbat this past month! After over 15 months of Virtual Shabbat Services over Zoom, everyone was thrilled to once again have Shabbat Morning services in person.
There was a sense of familiarity and normalcy when Mel and Dan warmly greeted residents on the first Shabbat morning back as they made their way into the Great Room. What a joy to see them in the flesh, instead of on a screen, and to listen to their voices fill the room, leading prayers and chanting Torah. While everyone is eternally grateful for Zoom, it was a pleasure for residents to be surrounded once again by friends and feel a part of this community, instead of each alone in their apartments watching on an iPad.
As we ended the Shabbat service with wine and grape juice, and Challah from Nadine’s Bakery as usual, we did miss the Kiddush lunch that would usually follow Services on Shabbat mornings. It was wonderful to be together again, and it will be even better when restrictions ease even more, allowing us to enjoy lunch together, take our masks off, and sit closer to each than six feet. For now, we will take what we can get!
For those who were not yet ready to come back into Handmaker for the in-person service, we set up a laptop and screen so that they could still join in the service via Zoom. We will likely continue to do so for some time.
For information about joining us for Shabbat Services at Handmaker in person, or for the Zoom links, please contact Nanci Levy at [email protected] There is a screening process for attendees to the in-person service, and all outside guests must be fully vaccinated.