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Meeting in Person

05/11/2021 04:23:10 PM

May11

Rabbi Brent Spodek

Dear Friends:

The last time we gathered as a community was at the Purim Carnival last March; since then, we’ve gathered only online or in small groups. But, 15 months, one presidential election and 100 million vaccines later, we’re ready to start thinking about meeting in person again!

Of course, we will be following the guidance of the NYS Department of Health as well as BHA member Dr. Paul Ostrovsky regarding best practices. 

I want to share with you some of the plans we are working on with the caveat that there are many moving pieces, and we might have to change plans at some point. But for now, here’s the plan:

The Summer

Starting on Friday May 21, we are planning to start davvening on Friday nights at the pavilion at the University Settlement Camp (USC)! Woohoo! 

Our schedule will remain mostly the same, with adult learning at 5PM-6PM, mini-minyan at 5:30PM-6PM, and everyone davvening (adults and kids) at 6:00 PM. Everyone is welcome to bring a picnic dinner for their family if they wish, but at least for now, we will not have a “formal” BHA dinner. 

For services, please bring picnic blankets and/or lawn chairs that you are comfortable sitting on; we’ll ask that people set up at least 10 feet apart from each other. At that distance, we are not mandating that everyone wear masks, though of course, those who wish to do so are welcome to. 

You can see a map of where we’ll be meeting here. We recommend you enter the park at the northern entrance, bear right and proceed up the hill.  Parking spaces, including handicapped spaces, are located at the camp office near where we are meeting at the pavilion.  When that parking is full, please proceed down to the pool parking lot near the southern most entrance.

We hope to have internet access there so that we can broadcast our learning and davvening via our facebook page. We do not intend to keep making use of zoom. BHA members are encouraged to join the WhatsApp group for communication and connection over distance - Visit the BHA Members Only page for the link.

In the event of light rain, we can easily move into the open walled pavilion and maintain adequate distance; if the forecast calls for heavy rain, we’ll move entirely on-line.

FridayFri, 27 MayMay, 2022

 
 
Friday Kehillah at BHA

Friday, May 27th 4:00p to 5:30pKehillah means “community”, and this is our weekly chance to come together in a social environment at the BHA Outdoor Classroom, featuring Mitzvah Labs, a chance to explore Jewish ritual and holidays following the theme of each Hebrew month. Open to all, suggested donation $36 per family, included with Masa.

MORE INFO

FridayFri, 27 MayMay, 2022

 
 
The Language of Truth/Sefat at BHA

Friday, May 27th 5:00p to 6:00pThe Sefat Emet (R. Yehudah Aryeh Leib Alter of Gur, 1847-1905) was a Hasidic Rebbe known for his keen insight, spiritual and emotional sensitivity, and accessible Torah. Join Rabbi Brent for a weekly exploration of his Torah commentary and the illumination it can provide us. We will be meeting in person at the BHA.

MORE INFO

FridayFri, 27 MayMay, 2022

 
 
Kabbalat Shabbat at the BHA

Friday, May 27th 6:00p to 7:00pJoin us at the BHA to welcome Shabbat with song.

MORE INFO

FridayFri, 3 JunJune, 2022

 
 
The Language of Truth/Sefat at BHA

Friday, Jun 3rd 5:00p to 6:00pThe Sefat Emet (R. Yehudah Aryeh Leib Alter of Gur, 1847-1905) was a Hasidic Rebbe known for his keen insight, spiritual and emotional sensitivity, and accessible Torah. Join Rabbi Brent for a weekly exploration of his Torah commentary and the illumination it can provide us. We will be meeting in person at the BHA.

MORE INFO

FridayFri, 3 JunJune, 2022

 
 
Kabbalat Shabbat at the BHA

Friday, Jun 3rd 6:00p to 7:00pJoin us at the BHA to welcome Shabbat with song.

MORE INFO

FridayFri, 10 JunJune, 2022

 
 
The Language of Truth/Sefat at BHA

Friday, Jun 10th 5:00p to 6:00pThe Sefat Emet (R. Yehudah Aryeh Leib Alter of Gur, 1847-1905) was a Hasidic Rebbe known for his keen insight, spiritual and emotional sensitivity, and accessible Torah. Join Rabbi Brent for a weekly exploration of his Torah commentary and the illumination it can provide us. We will be meeting in person at the BHA.

MORE INFO

The Days of Awe

The Days of Awe present some particular challenges this year. Two main things to be aware of: a) between adults and children, we generally have approximately 250 people in the building during the “peak” moments of the Days of Awe and b) our building has no ventilation system at all, and few windows that open more than a few inches. The ventilation is poor enough that most years, at least one person passes out from the heat in the building over the holidays. 

The good news is that we live in a beautiful part of the world with ample outdoor space. I am currently in conversation with some local camps to see if we can have our services there, and I am confident that we will find a way to celebrate the Days of Awe in a setting that is safe, comfortable, and gives us some flexibility in the event of inclement weather. 

The New Year

For Shabbat services we generally have no more than 50 people in the building at a time. It is my hope that for regular Shabbat services (after the Days of Awe) we will again be able to meet in our building, even if we have to make some adjustments to the building and/or our programs. 

Traditionally minded Jews preface nearly any statement about the future - even lunch in half an hour - with B’ezrat Hashem, or God willing. B’ezrat Hashem, I’m going to have a chicken salad sandwich soon, or B’ezrat Hashem, my child will be married in the fall. 

It’s a way of acknowledging that the future is always uncertain - sometimes we are aware of that, and sometimes we forget, but really, we never can be certain about what is happening next. 

So, B’ezrat Hashem, we’ll meet in person again soon - first outdoors and ultimately back in our communal home.  

Wed, May 25 2022 24 Iyyar 5782