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Temple Sinai Safe Gathering Policies and Their Implementation

Safe Gathering Policy
Update: January 31, 2022

Thank you for your ongoing patience as we respond to an ever-changing Covid landscape. We are thrilled so many of you have been able to join our remote programming in January, although we miss being with you! We remain in contact with our health-care professionals, and we consider staffing, facility, and programmatic needs as we make these decisions.

As we slowly return to in-person programming, we remind you of the following temple policies regarding in-person programming:

  • A properly fitted mask is required while on temple property. We strongly recommend a N95, KN95, or KF94 mask.
  • Everyone entering the building must be fully vaccinated (including boosters for those who are eligible). Medical exemptions must be pre-approved by the Executive Director, Terrie Goren, in advance of services and programs.
  • If serving food has been pre-approved, it must be served by one or a limited number of people following hygienic food handling practices or individually wrapped. Eating and drinking may only take place while seated and appropriately distanced.
  • B’nei Mitzvah policies can be read here.
  • Committees will continue to meet on Zoom.

The following programs will take place in-person. For a complete list of programming, please refer to the eNews or calendar on our website:

  • B’nei Mitzvah
  • Final B’nei Mitzvah Rehearsals
  • First and Third Friday Night Shabbat Services
  • Sababa Shabbat
  • Tuesday Night Teens programs Mechina (grades 7-8) and Yozma (grades 9-12)
  • Tuesday Morning Minyan
  • Confirmation
  • Friday and Saturday Religious School
  • Adult Choir
  • Preschool
  • Scheduled programs and workshops
  • Lay-led Shabbat Minyan (space permitting)
Safe Gathering Policy


To protect the health of our community, Temple Sinai has adopted a new policy that requires proof of Covid-19 vaccination for in-person attendance at all temple events, both on-site and off-site, and both indoors and outdoors. It is now common practice to show proof of vaccination to enter restaurants, theaters and other public gathering places, and the temple will follow that example.

Beginning in January, proof of vaccination will be requested and verified as people arrive at Temple Sinai events. Being fully vaccinated means that each attendee has had an initial course of vaccination and a booster, if eligible. This requirement currently applies as follows:

  • Everyone aged 18 and older is required to show proof of an initial course of vaccination and if eligible, a booster. 
  • Everyone under age 18 must follow the guidance of the CDC: Read CDC policy here
  • Everyone over the age of 12 is required to show proof of initial vaccination(s).
  • Everyone aged 5-11 will be required to show proof of being fully vaccinated as of March 1st.
  • There will be no exceptions at the door. Everyone will be treated consistently and fairly.
  • Requests for exemption must be preapproved in writing by the Executive Director.

Proof of vaccination may consist of a) your printed vaccination card, b) a photo of your vaccination card on your phone, or c) digital proof of vaccination from the State of California's website.

Temple Sinai members have generously volunteered their time to work as ushers/greeters and vaccination document checkers at temple events. To assist them and to help facilitate your entry to an event, please have your proof of vaccination easily accessible to show an usher/greeter. If you are vaccinated, we urge you to visit the state’s website ( that allows you to download a QR code and digital copy of your COVID-19 vaccination record on your phone.


Everyone over age two must always wear a properly fitting mask on temple property and at temple events, except when actively eating. N-95 masks are highly recommended for those who want increased protection.


Everyone must assess their own personal risk tolerance for attending events in person. While Temple Sinai is taking every reasonable precaution, by attending group events or religious services, you understand that the Temple cannot guarantee zero risk of exposure, despite requirements for vaccination, masking and social distancing, and our upgraded ventilation system. Even vaccination, which is the most effective way to prevent serious illness, does not offer complete protection against infection. There may be people in attendance that are not vaccinated due to contraindications.
Our goal is to protect the safety of all members of our community, including its most vulnerable. If you haven’t been vaccinated yet, you can learn more about COVID-19 vaccines at including frequently asked questions about where to get vaccinated.

If you have questions or comments about our policy, please contact Terrie Goren, Executive Director, at or Jon Braslaw, Congregational President, at

Vaccine Policy FAQ

What does “fully vaccinated” mean?

Fully vaccinated for adults means an initial course of vaccination(s) and a booster, if the last vaccine is more than 6 months prior.  Requirements vary based on age and dates when vaccines became eligible.

When are we required to show proof of vaccination?

Proof of vaccination—both initial vaccination(s) and a booster shot, if eligible—must be shown when arriving at any in-person Temple Sinai events. This includes events that are on campus and off campus, and both indoor and outdoor events.

For large events like Shabbat services or holiday programs, please plan to arrive at least fifteen minutes early to ensure there's time to check everyone's vaccine status.

What counts as proof of vaccination?

You can show a) your printed vaccination card, b) a photo of the vaccination card on your phone, or
c) digital proof of vaccination from the State of California website.

Who must show proof of vaccination?

  • Everyone over the age of 18 is required to have an initial course of vaccination(s) and a booster.
  • Everyone aged 16 - 17 must follow the CDC guidelines for boosters.
  • Youth over the age of 12 are required to have their initial vaccination(s).
  • Children aged 5 - 11 will need proof of vaccination as of March 1, 2022.

What happens if I forget my vaccination card?

Our friendly volunteer ushers will have a QR code that you can scan with your phone, to show your digital proof of vaccination on the State of California website.                                  

What if I or a family member, friend, or guest of mine is not vaccinated?

Our volunteer ushers can NOT grant exemptions at the door. If you are unable to provide proof of vaccination, we will regretfully have to turn you away.

If there is a genuine medical reason you are unable to be vaccinated, please contact our Executive Director Terrie Goren in advance to discuss a possible exemption:

Please keep in mind that services and most other events are still being live-streamed! We hope you will join us via Facebook or YouTube if you are unable to attend in person.

If I'm vaccinated, do I still have to wear a mask?

Yes! Masking is a crucial part of keeping everyone healthy. We require everyone to be masked when on Temple Sinai property or at a Temple-sponsored event, both indoors and outdoors. The only time you may remove your mask is if you are seated at a table and actively eating, as at an oneg.

Can Temple Sinai develop a list of vaccinated members, so I don't have to show my card every time?

This is something we may consider in the future, depending on the course of the pandemic and how the vaccine-checking process works.

Do I have to show vaccination proof if I'm just picking up my child from preschool?

No, as long as this is a normal quick pick-up. However, if you're staying for a teacher conference or other extended meeting, we do require vaccination.

Who is responsible for informing my Bar/Bat Mitzvah guests of the vaccine requirement?

Proof of vaccination is required for all Temple events, including Bar/Bat Mitzvahs. The family is responsible for informing all guests of our vaccination and masking policies.  A written summary will be provided as part of the B’nei Mitzvah communication process.

Who is responsible for checking vaccine status?

We are relying on volunteers from the Temple Sinai community. We have enlisted our Board of Directors to act as ushers and are actively seeking support from others in the community.  Ushers will be trained and will have written guidelines to follow.

We are asking each B’nei Mitzvah family to provide ONE usher for their Saturday service; the Temple will provide two other volunteer ushers.

Groups such as Women of Temple Sinai, Brotherhood, the choir, etc., are responsible for designating vaccination checkers for their in-person events.  We will help coordinate efforts as necessary.

How can I help with this process?

Thanks for asking! To make this work, we need volunteer ushers who can check vaccination status at Friday and Saturday services, as well as other events. We warmly invite you to sign up: Contact Phil Rubin at You will be doing a vital service to build community and maintain our Jewish traditions, while keeping everyone healthy.


Mon, May 16 2022 15 Iyar 5782