Changes to COVID-19 policy for Religious Services

Summary of Changes (please also read the complete message from the Board)

  • Pre-registration no longer required.
  • Masking strongly encouraged (particularly when singing) but not mandatory.
  • Proof of vaccination no longer required. Adults, if unvaccinated, please test for COVID before attending Emanu-El events.
  • On Shabbat, please continue to enter through the Social Hall doors (security protocols remain)
  • Please continue to respect personal space and hand hygiene guidelines.

From Emanu-El’s Board of Directors:

As we return to more in-person events, please help us to keep everyone healthy. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Congregation Emanu-El has taken a careful approach. The Rabbinical Assembly for Conservative Judaism reminds us that Jewish law requires that we take appropriate measures to preserve life and health, for ourselves and for everyone else. Although religious services were exempt from the provincial restrictions governing in-person gatherings for the last several months, Emanu-El upheld the importance of pikuach nefesh by enforcing the vaccine mandate, requiring masking, and ensuring appropriate distancing for all our in-person events.

As we enter a new phase of the pandemic and with the current absence of any regulatory requirements for these measures, we have decided to discontinue enforcing them. Nonetheless, the health and safety of our entire community remains paramount. Recognizing the fluidity of public health COVID-19 guidelines, this policy will be reviewed periodically by the board.

Effective April 16 2022:

  • We will not require proof of vaccination. We hope that everyone attending in-person events has been vaccinated as per current medical recommendations.
    • Adults: if you are not fully vaccinated, please be kind enough to take a COVID-19 test prior to attending any in-person synagogue events. Rapid tests are available for free for anyone over 18. If you are symptomatic for COVID-19 or any other illness, please help keep our community safe and stay home. 
  • We will reduce masking to optional but recommended, in particular for the sanctuary where due to singing with prayers, masking (except when leading the service) is strongly encouraged.
  • We will eliminate our current capacity limit and the related required physical distancing.

We recognize that people will have different levels of comfort with close socializing; please be respectful of other peoples’ choices and comfort zones.

We look forward to seeing you all and to enjoying in-person events, including kiddushim after services. May we go from strength to strength.

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An inclusive, warm, and progressive Conservative synagogue in Victoria, B.C.

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