Rediscovering real spirituality during the Covid-19 pandemic…

Alan J. Schwarz
5 min readJan 18, 2021

I am a person who has always enjoyed going to Synagogue for services. I have always relished the opportunity to pray and talk with people who share the same kind of background I do. I have always appreciated a great sermon, and I like the idea of leaving with a feeling that I’ve experienced a spiritual shower. It is uplifting and healthy for the brain and the soul.

Since the Covid-19 pandemic struck, my world required some serious adjustments. It all started with my Sister being hospitalized in March of 2020. She almost passed away and was one of the earliest and first cases of Covid 19 in our area. Her symptoms presented differently but she was extremely sick. Her organs started shutting down. I never prayed so hard in my life, and my prayers were answered. After eighteen days in the Intensive Care Unit and five days on a hospital floor, she was finally released to go home. I will be grateful to Gd and the medical team that looked after her for the rest of my life.

One of the things that changed was the news that Covid-19 was highly infectious and proper precautions had to be taken to try and avoid catching the virus. This meant wearing a mask when going into stores and washing hands on a more frequent and regular basis. It also meant people couldn’t assemble in large numbers. I liked going to Synagogue every Saturday morning, but I made the decision to start praying at home.

When my Father passed in the summer of 2009, I spent the year going to different synagogues in Toronto to say the memorial prayer for him. I really enjoyed interacting with the different communities and it allowed me to see how different Rabbis led their services.

When my Mom passed it was in the winter of 2019, and I flew to Florida and attended services primarily at two Synagogues in South Florida. I was fortunate to interact with some incredibly decent people and I made some new friends.

This year as the Covid problem became more serious in Toronto, I decided to retreat to my home to do my praying. It was hard to know that the Synagogues were open and I was praying by myself at home. I knew of some people who maintained community by praying with others over zoom, but I didn’t feel comfortable with that idea. The things that happened regarding…

Alan J. Schwarz

Alan Schwarz loves life. He is the founder of JAMS Productions, a television production company based in Toronto . His passion is writing.