As day camps enter their second week, and some of our community’s children head off to sleepaway camps, we pray that each day will bring us only smiling photos and glowing reports of our children. We relish our children’s intense relief at getting the chance to let off the pent-up steam of this unexpected four-month lockdown.
We salute and applaud the camp directors and staff who have embraced a staggering new set of safety guidelines and are working in, quite possibly, the most difficult and high pressure conditions of their professional lives, in order to give our children the chance to get outside and be active. While we must remain vigilant and seek to ensure safety in every case, we are also relieved that our community recognizes that our children must get outside, and that staff are doing everything they can to care for our children, physically and mentally.
Here at home, as shuls have begun to cautiously open their doors to in-person davening, we are heartened by the care that our rabbinic leadership have put into making masking and social distancing the norm. We are cognizant that our community leaders, in both camps and synagogues, are doing their utmost to mitigate the threats.
At the same moment, the mounting COVID-19 cases in Florida, California and elsewhere, as well as a frightening second wave in Israel, are concerning, and we pray this is not a harbinger of things to come here at home. Continued vigilance, which has shown great promise, is our only real hope in our efforts to keep the virus from making a comeback in our communities.
We continue to pray that the safety plans in place will continue to be effective, and we pray for a refuah sheleima for all who have been affected. As everyone continues to take seriously the pandemic’s threat, even as we have re-entered society in some ways, we are grateful that getting back to our communal lives is now deemed essential.