Measures we are taking against Covid-19
We hope this message finds you and your loved ones safe and well.
This situation is affecting every one of us; we’re learning as we go. What we know today is likely to be different tomorrow. It’s most important to know you are not alone – we are in this together. You can expect to hear from Rabbi and me regularly until we are up and running again sometime in the future.
Here are some highlights about how we are working at Congregation Beth Ami:
The entire CBA campus (including Friedman Center, Nursery School and Synagogue) is closed. Gates are locked at the driveway entrances on Mayette Avenue; All working staff are working “virtually,” from home.
Rabbi Miller is holding services and minyans “virtually,” meaning via ZOOM. You can access his classes and services here.
We have had to furlough (temporarily lay off) or cut hours for every staff member on the campus – teachers, FC, CBA office. Elizabeth Jarlsberg can be reached at the usual office phone #: 707-360-3000, between the hours of 10:00 & 2:00 daily.
Committees and your Board of Directors meet via ZOOM. I am very proud of the Board and how Directors have stepped up to provide leadership and decision-making skill at this time.
The physical space of Beth Ami Community Nursery School is closed for the remainder of the school year. Teachers and administrators are staying in touch with their children “virtually,” and all are working from home.
Friedman Center has postponed or cancelled events, and Andrea is working from home.
At the urging of congregants, we’ve established a “Calling, Caring & Connecting” effort, engaging a group of 25 members who are making calls each week to check-in with every congregant. Stay connected and let your caller know if you need something – from TP to prayerbooks!
At the urging of Nursery School parents and some CBA members, we’re creating a team of volunteers who “can do” for the vulnerable among us: go grocery shopping, for example, or read aloud to someone with poor eyesight. You’ll hear more as this develops.
Stay well friends,
Carolyn Metz, President, email@example.com
and Rabbi Mordecai Miller firstname.lastname@example.org
Rabbi Miller online during shelter in place directives.
Beth Ami has been working on ways to bring services, davening and Torah study into our homes while our building is closed. We are starting with Zoom sessions, plus streaming video on our Facebook page at these times, along with pdfs of prayerbooks for following along:
Friday, Kabbalat Shabbat 6:00 pm, Siddur Chadash Kabbalat Shabbat
Saturday, 9:30 am, Siddur Chadash Shabbat Morning
Weekday: 8:30 a.m. Sunday through Friday mornings will be conducted on Zoom. Email Rabbi@BethAmiSR.org if you have questions.
weekday Shacharit SIDDUR SIM SHALOM
weekday afternoon SIDDUR SIM SHALOM
weekday maariv SIDDUR SIM SHALOM
Beth Ami Virtual Week chart with Zoom links Beth Ami Virtual Week
Social Action and Adult Education: Three nights on Civil Rights
The Social Action and Adult Education Committees are co-sponsoring three evenings of education on Civil Rights and Social Justice.
Thursday evenings at 7:00 – July 16, 23, 30 Are you concerned about racism in our country? Are you pondering what you can do to help improve civil rights? How can we help?
Benjamin Mertz will lead us as we explore these questions through lecture, discussion and music. He lives in the Bay Area and is a is a Black social activist, composer, performer, and song leader who specializes in music of the Black Spiritual tradition. Join us as we learn about black history, music, political causes for the social inequities that are causing all the pain, suffering and social unrest today. SEPARATE ZOOM Link To get more information about the event, please contact Carol Swanson, 707-874-3412
Social Action continues to provide food to The Palms. We came up with an idea to prepare individual portions. Social Action Committee meets periodically to plan the next Palms dinner. To get more info, please call Lyla Nathan at 526-7438 or Elizabeth Jarlsberg at BA office 360-3000.
Is Judaism a Mystery Cult-A step towards modern Judaism. When: Sunday, July 19 at 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Where: Zoom In the Greco-Roman period (approximately 300 BCE-200 CE) the ancient world was home to a number of ‘mystery cults’ Mystery cults were generally characterized by the worship of a specific protective diety; the promise of a special relationship with that deity; and an initiation ritual: and the revelation of some secret knowledge relating to the deity.
The process of converting to Judaism was developed during this period. We’ll explore how the Jewish conversion process might fit these characteristics (and how it might not) and speculate on just what the relationship between Judaism and the mystery cults might have been.
Rabbi Mary Ellen Movshin (Rabbi Mem) is no stranger to Beth Ami having visited us on several occasions to visit with her past teacher, our Rabbi Miller, in St.Louis. Rabbi Movshin was ordained this past January in the Aleph Ordination Program. She has extensively studied Judaism during the Greco-Roman period when Judaism was in transition form a sacrificial cult to what eventually evolved into a Synagogue based form of prayer and study. To join in this interesting study, please join see the virtual week zoom link.
Drop-in Book Discussion Group: Lately I’ve held a couple of book discussion gatherings for 6 in my backyard. We practice social distancing, sitting 12 feet apart in a circle, and can hear what each person has to say. In one group, each participant reported on a different book, fiction or n0n-fiction, whatever they chose to share. So this summer I will be hosting more of these small gatherings. i feel fortunate to have this space, and am opening up RSVP spots for other CBA members and friends for sharing congenial conversation and diverse points of view in a safe environment. I also plan to have a poetry discussion group. No politics, please. If anyone wants to offer another outdoor space, I’ll help. For more details and dates phone Linda Emblen, 544-4532. I’m very happy to coordinate.
Online: Mishna Class with Rabbi Mordecai Miller on Tuesday afternoons 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. (Rabbi’s Study)
The collection of Oral Torah edited and compiled by Rabbi Judah the Prince in the year 200. We will examine the Hebrew text and the classic commentary of Rabbi Ovadiah of Bertinora. All Hebrew will be translated and explained. We will make reference to the Artscroll Mishna. The tractate we will study is Brachot which deals with the content, nature and structure of the recitation of the Shema, our daily prayers, the Grace after meals and blessings for different occasions.
Please feel free to sign up and catch a sample lesson and join us weekly if you find this speaks to your desire to learn about our traditions.
Online: TaNaCh Class with Rabbi Mordecai Miller: Thursdays at 2:30 p.m. in the Library. A study and discussion based on the Parsha of the week or Neviim (Prophets.)
Online: Midrash Class with Rabbi Mordecai Miller: Wednesday evenings 7:30 – 8:30 p.m. (Rabbi’s Study) We examine the original text of the Midrash Rabba (the Great Midrash) on Genesis as well as an 18th Century commentary called “Eitz Yoseph”. These provide original insights into the Biblical text. Discussion is encouraged. Bi-weekly schedule.
There is no charge for Rabbi Miller’s classes. A source for Torah and Haftarah is at Bible.ort.org or here Another source: http://www.lashon.net/CL/
Beth Ami Virtual Week chart with Zoom links Beth Ami Virtual Week
On Zoom: Morning Minyan 8:30am in the chapel
If you need to say Kaddish or memorialize a special event, contact the office at 360-3000 one week in advance, and we will do our best to secure a minyan.
On Zoom: Evening service 8:00 p.m.
Suspended: Israeli Folk Dancing See the Israeli Dance blog.
Congregation Beth Ami is located in Northern California,in the heart of Wine Country in Sonoma County, about one hour north of San Francisco, and about one hour west of Napa.