Letter from the Executive Director
These are challenging times in which we all find ourselves. Our lives are changing moment to moment, and we don’t know what the next day will bring. A friend shared a letter from a rabbi the other day that sought to comfort by reminding us all that the certainty we thought we had a week or two ago was an illusion, and that life was just as out of our control then as it is now.
I suppose, philosophically, that is true – Life can always change in the blink of an eye. But the distance this current crisis has put between us all and the disruption to our routines, nonetheless, creates upheaval and encounters with the unknown, which are always unsettling.
So, we take comfort and special notice of our relationships with one another. We are grateful for them, as I am grateful for all you.
And we try to put in place new routines, a “new normal,” as quickly as possible; we innovate to overcome limitations; and we try to keep what normalcy we can retain from the previous paradigm.
This Jewish Cemeteries newsletter will address all three!!!
We want you to all know that we are working with the funeral home and other partners to establish new protocols for funerals, which will all be graveside services, for the foreseeable future. This will involve possibly limiting the number of people who can attend, keeping appropriate distance between attendees, and possibly changes to how we conduct the funerals. These new protocols will do their best to respect our traditions, while prioritizing the safety of family and friends and of our staff.
We’ll innovate, by trying to keep you posted more regularly on those protocols or related information, as well as on non-Covid 19 related matters, through our website, emails, and a Facebook page we will be launching soon. This will be a new effort from Jewish Cemeteries to engage you more in our work, as well as our future plans and events, when safe to resume.
And we’ll try to maintain normalcy through communicating with you as we normally would in this newsletter, with great articles, including an update on our Veterans Project; a beautiful testimonial from Karen and Stuart Zanger, our newest Guardians; a Q&A about pre-planning with Weil Kahn Funeral Home; and, as always, a truly fascinating piece by Rabbi Crystal on the history of Judah Touro and why we have a cemetery named after him.
I hope you’ll enjoy and let us know your thoughts on this newsletter and the articles, or other feedback about our work.
Most importantly these days, stay well and safe!
In service of our mission,