Fresh guidance has been issued to United Synagogue shuls as lockdown eases, which urges communities to consider holding services outdoors.
The extensive advice recommends the clinically vulnerable to exercise their own judgement on whether to attend services, and urges shul-goers to get a vaccine when offered.
Children are especially encouraged to attend, as long as parents can guarantee that they are able to stay in one place.
“Following a winter during which many of our shuls closed their doors, we look forward to gathering again as communities to daven, learn, volunteer, mark significant events and enjoy being in the company of each other,” states the guidance, which has been signed off by the Chief Rabbi and London Beth Din.
Visors will not be considered an acceptable alternative to masks, it states, while those handling ritual items are being told to make sure they sanitise their hands when doing so.
It adds that alongside the Government’s guidance, singing should not take place in doors unless from a permitted service leader or choir member.
The updated guidance to communities comes after United Synagogue unveiled its ‘roadmap’ for the resumption of many in-person services last month.
In line with the government’s lockdown easing plans, from no earlier than 17 May, Rabbinic hospitality could be permitted again, limited to six people or two households, with a weddings limit of 30 people.
No earlier than June 21 – the date the government is targeting for the end of all social distancing restrictions – it is possible that kiddush will be permitted again indoors and communal meals could restart under the plans.
While life in Israel has returned to normal and hopes are high that Britain is set for a summer without restrictions thanks to vaccines, for billions around the world there is no such imminent light at the end of the tunnel. In the majority of countries around the globe, particularly the poorest, the vaccine rollout has barely kicked off.
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