Dear community members,

Our Sages tell us chamirah sakanta me’isura, that matters of danger need to be taken even more seriously than Torah prohibitions. It is on that note that we urge – for us and all guests visiting Cincinnati – an exceedingly cautious approach to attendance at minyanim and other public events. Especially during this health crisis, it is a violation of Torah and common sense to even consider attendance if you are not feeling well, are immunocompromised, or have had any known exposure to individuals with Coronavirus (bearing in mind that symptoms do not develop immediately upon transmission, and that one can carry the disease while still feeling healthy and well).

No religious or interpersonal motivation (e.g. the recitation of Kaddish, sharing in a simchah) can remotely justify doing otherwise. If you are not coming to shul, do not organize or go to a house minyan instead – we have been informed that the creation of small house minyanim can increase the spread of the virus, and actually did so in another city. Please consult your Rav if you need guidance in navigating any complications that these priorities may pose.

On that note, we would also encourage the utmost understanding and appreciation of those who choose to avoid handshakes, public events, and all the other circumstances and ways in which the virus can spread. Indeed, those who choose to take this more cautious approach are to be commended for their resolve.

May Hashem keep us all healthy!

[March 13]