Kever Avot – 5782
On Friday afternoon, September 10th 2021 at 2 PM, the MCJC will be holding a Kever Avot event in the Jewish section of the Evergreen Cemetery in the Village of Mendocino.
Kever Avot (Graves of the Ancestors) is a traditional observance where the Jewish community gathers during the Days of Awe, between Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur in the cemetery to visit graves, remember and honor their friends and family who have died, share food and schmooze. We tried this for the first time online last year, and this year we will gather in-person.
Visiting graves during Elul and before Yom Kippur is a very old Jewish custom. Doing this as a community has been going on in the US for around 200 years. It is most common in rural communities and most popular in the South, but has been cropping up in many places recently.
It is somewhat different for us in this place and time. Most of our families are buried elsewhere, members of the MCJC have been buried in several cemeteries along the coast and in the time of Covid we need to exercise strict public health precautions; for the most part we will need to be distanced and masked. We can’t share food, but some very light refreshment will be provided.
This will be a chance to remember those who are no longer with us and tell stories about them, reflect on, in the words of the immortal super-genius Frank Zappa, “it's so f*cking great it is to be alive” and visit with the other members of our Jewish community.
There will be a short presentation with members of the community reading a few poems in keeping with the spirit of the event, an opportunity for those in mourning to say the Kaddish Yaton and we will have Kiddish followed by a light snack and a chance to schmooze.
Seating will not be provided, but if you would like to you may bring a folding chair. The Cemetery Sexton said that disabled people may drive into the cemetery and park by the side of the road (not on graves). She cautioned that when driving out of the cemetery exercise extreme caution because people drive like bats out of Ghenna down Main St, coming off of Highway 1. It would be a kindness if people who find it easy to walk distances park a little farther away from the entrance so people who may find walking harder can park closer.
Wear your mask at all times, except when eating or drinking, and then make sure you are appropriately distanced
Six feet is considered a safe distance from people not in your household
Pay attention to wind direction, if you are talking with someone, ideally the wind would be blowing perpendicular to the plane of your conversation
Think of the virus like tobacco smoke, If you are close enough to someone that if they were smoking a cigar it would bother you, then you are probably too close. I thought about giving everyone cigars, but the MCJC board probably wouldn't pay for it. (rge)
Bear In Mind - Pikuach Nefesh
Pikuach nefesh (saving a life) outweighs any Mitzvah, Safety first!
As of September 8th the Mendocino County 7-day average daily COVID-19 case rate was 35/100k, with a test positivity rate of 9%. Under the old State of Cal system, anything over a case rate of 10/100K would put a County in the highest (purple) tier for closures
Studies are showing that vaccine efficacy is declining most sharply for prevention of infection, but also for serious outcomes.
Infected fully vaccinated individuals, even when asymptomatic can infect others
Unvaccinated people are at much greater risk, but vaccinated people are also being hospitalized, ending up in ICUs and dying.
An Israeli study published in May in The Lancet showed that the older vaccinated demographic is much more likely to experience a serious outcome from a breakthrough infection.
Even if you have had a test, all that tells you is that you did not have a viral titer high enough to be detected when the sample was collected. You could have been infected and the viral load might have not yet built to a sufficient level to be detected or you could have been infected since the sample was collected.
There is growing evidence that a high frequency of people who have had Covid may experience long term effects (PASC), this may be as high as a third including individuals who were asymptomatic and had "mild" cases.
This is a Google Map link to the Evergreen cemetery in Mendocino https://goo.gl/maps/cf9Z5zDzzQ7mfx8q8
This is the cemetery entrance
2:00p - Orientation/Covid - Bob
2:10p - Grave Visits
2:30p - Introduction - Bob
Unetanneh Tokef - Donna
Otherwise - Mickey
The Grim Reaper - Joan
We Remember Them - Raven
Shoah Memorial - Mina
Those not here/ EMR Intro - Bob
El Malei Rachamim (Hebrew) - Margaret
El Malei Rachamim (English) - Clare
Psalm 23 - Bob
2:50p - Kaddish Yaton - Margaret
2:55p - Kiddish - Margaret
Snacks & Schmooze
If you have any questions, please contact Bob Evans at email@example.com
©Robert G Evans 09/10/2021