LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — As social distancing keeps families apart for Passover, families have turned to video chat to come together for the holiday.
Families have decided to use Facetime and Zoom to be with their extended families and keep up their traditions during the coronavirus crisis.
“We are trying to keep the tradition alive by having the full Seder…with all the parts that are required including the Haggadah and the Seder plates, and all the symbols that go along with the story, ” said Porter Ranch resident Janice Schneider.
Schneider and her 13-year-old daughter were busy preparing for Seder Wednesday night while making Matzo Ball Soup.
“I want to maintain that tradition, that spirit, in our household and try to have a sense of normalcy as much as possible,” Schneider said.
With state-mandated “Safer-At-Home” orders, Passover this year was anything but normal during the pandemic and social distancing.
“It is not a time to congregate,” said Gov. Gavin Newsom Wednesday. “It is a time to pray, to reflect. It’s time to practice our faith, but not in the congregate settings.”
The Schneider family planned to use video chatting to stay connected with family.
“This will be the first year it is just the four of us, and we will be calling my mom and dad on Facetime to do the service,” said Schneider. “Normally there’s 25 to 30 of us surrounded on a table.”
This year Schneider will deliver food to her parents without interacting.
“It is pretty disappointing not to be spending time with our family this year besides being on Zoom or Facetime,” said Jacob Schneider. “We do hope they are staying safe and healthy.”
The family is working to make sure the evening doesn’t lose any of its meaning.
“I actually think that the story of Passover is a story of survival and getting through all the struggles, being able to get past all the tragedy and the plagues and the slavery,” Janice Schneider said. “It’s just a very inspirational story of survival.”
Unlike the Schneider family, there are plenty of seniors in the Los Angeles area that do not have younger family members to deliver meals, so Jewish Family Services has delivered meals for nearly 700 seniors.