Dear Mount Zion community,
Last night, members of the Board met to discuss Mount Zion’s response to the recently declared pandemic. Among the topics discussed were how we as a community can best support each other in this time of continually evolving information and growing fears. This emails is a follow up to our letter on Monday.
There was a consensus that an abundance of caution was the best course of action at this time. Pikuach nefesh - the mitzvah of saving a life - outweighs all other mitzvot, and we wish to be good stewards of our communal health and wellbeing, both physical and spiritual. Our Minnesota Jewish community last night wrote this letter about our need to get ahead of this virus even before instructions from the Minnesota Department of Health. If we reduce exposure now, we will “flatten the curve” of COVID-19 incidents, which will help mitigate risks to the most vulnerable in our society. We encourage you to help by limiting in-person interactions
Starting today, Mount Zion’s building will be closed through March 31 and all services, school, and activities are cancelled. We will re-evaluate the closure as we have more information and we will still have options for staying connected as reflected below:
  • Shabbat services: We will live-stream our Shabbat evening and morning services at the regular times (7:30 pm tonight and 10 am tomorrow). Tonight’s teen led service is postponed.
  • In addition, a special national Shabbat service will be broadcast at 6 pm on Facebook led by Noah Aronson, Josh Nelson, Shira Kline, Elana Arian, and Rabbi Leora Kaye. or
  • Food for Thought, Tot Shabbat and Sefer Seminar are cancelled.
  • Daily Services are cancelled.
  • Passover Seder - Unfortunately, we must cancel our Mount Zion seder (April 8) and religious school model seders. We will be in touch about ways to have a meaningful Passover in the coming weeks. 
Religious School and Youth Activities
  • Sue Summit, Religious School Director, will be in touch with the religious school community.
  • B’nei Mitzvah Tutoring: Our cantors will be in touch with you individually to arrange phone or electronic meetings.
Committee meetings
  • Leaders can be in touch with the office about using zoom for meetings.
Adult Learning
  • We will be in touch with updates as we explore our options for remote learning.
  • Monday Torah Study is cancelled.
  • Thursday Rashi Study will meet via zoom.
  • Shabbat Torah Study will meet via conference call. (Call 612-351-3093 and then enter conference number 590257). The rabbi will begin the call at 9:00 a.m. 
We know that this is a challenging message to receive. Uplifting our community’s kindness and compassion to calm anxieties is our priority even as we make this decision. No matter what, we are a community that values connection and we are committed to staying connected with you via phone and electronic communication. We encourage you to do the same - reach out to one another by phone, email, or social media - especially to those who may become isolated. The clergy and caring community leads are making every effort to keep in touch, but we can use your help. If you or someone you know is feeling isolated or needs any kind of material or spiritual support, please let us know by email or phone.
For general questions contact Larry Solomon at 651-238-6282,
We will keep you updated via email and our website as things evolve.

We wish you shalom, re’fuah, u’vracha - peace, health, and blessing after blessing.
Shabbat shalom,

Michael Kuhne, President
Adam Stock Spilker, Rabbi
Esther Adler, Rabbi
Jennifer Strauss-Klein, Cantor
Rachel Stock Spilker, Cantor
Larry Solomon, Executive Director
Sue Summit, Religious School Director
Shai Avny, Congregational Engagement Director