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Midbar Kodesh Temple Worship Services rely on Zoom

Where would we be without Zoom? Like so many businesses, organizations and houses of worship, we have come to rely on Zoom to bring us together. During a time when we are social distancing from one another, the ability to see and talk in real time can be the difference between separation and loneliness and unity and companionship.

At MKT, we have been using many methods of connecting from email to Facebook to phone calls. Mostly, we have been using Facebook Live and Zoom. Both Facebook Live and Zoom have their pros and cons. Facebook Live allows us the greatest reach. It lets us get our live message out to many people both while the event is happening as well as long afterword as people share the recording of the event. The drawback is that it is one sided. It is difficult to interact on Facebook Live. Though you can “chat” via texts messages you cannot see or hear one another.

On Zoom, we are able to really interact. We can all see and hear each other. I really believe that the hearing and seeing each other in real time at this moment is serving to keep up our spirits and attitudes. Zoom also has its drawbacks. It takes a little more technical skill than Facebook Live. There is sometimes a lag in the audio during services. We do not all like what we look like on camera. Not everyone remembers to mute when appropriate. Not everyone remembers to center themselves in the video. Sometimes family members or pets photobomb the Zoom event. But all of this is ok, even if it is a little messy.

Specifically, when it comes to Tefilot, or worship, I have been trying to migrate as many people as possible to Zoom. In order to recite certain prayers like Barchu, The Kedusha and Mourner’s Kaddish, we need a minyan or quorum of ten people who can see and hear each other. After all that is what coming together for prayer is all about. Even if you are a little uncomfortable with it, try it. After a few visits you will become a pro and get comfortable. We even have a bit of a virtual oneg/kiddush when the service is over and people hang out for a bit to chat.

However you choose to do it, we hope you opt to remain connected to our MKT community. We are working hard to meet the needs of the community physically, emotionally and spiritually. If you have any suggestions or recommendations on how to enhance our reach out to you, please be in touch.

Wishing everyone a safe and healthy Shabbat.

You can tune in to our services on our Facebook Page – or even better on our Zoom.

Friday Night 7:30 PM Zoom Link

Shabbat Morning 9:00 AM Zoom Link

Saturday night Community-wide Havdalah – Zoom Link to register

Rabbi Bradley Tecktiel has been Midbar Kodesh Temple's spiritual leader since August 2008. Rabbi Tecktiel was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in May of 1996. He holds two Bachelor of Arts degrees, one from List College and one from Columbia University. He also holds a Masters of Arts from the Jewish Theological Seminary.

You can follow him on Twitter @RabbiMKT.

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