Death & Mourning

The death of a loved one is so often a painful and confusing time for members of the family and dear friends. Read helpful information on the centuries-old Jewish practices around death and mourning.

Mourner's Kaddish

Version of the Kaddish, praising God, that mourners recite during the bereavement period and to mark the anniversary of a death of a loved one.

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Do Jews Believe in an Afterlife?

What happens when we die? Do we see our loved ones? Do we know them? Do they know us? Jewish wisdom offers no definitive answer, but there is guidance in several core teachings.

What to Expect at a Jewish Funeral

Jewish tradition teaches that human beings are created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26). This is the underpinning of all of the rituals and customs that make up a Jewish funeral.

Preparing for a Jewish Funeral: A Guide

The death of a loved one is often a painful and confusing time. This guide will assist you in planning the funeral and offer helpful information on the centuries-old Jewish burial practices.

Yahrzeit Calculator

It is a mitzvah (commandment) to observe yahrzeit , the anniversary of the day of death, by reciting Kaddish and attending synagogue services.

What's New

This Tishah B'Av, Act as if There is No God

Tishah B'Av is a day of mourning, commemorating the destruction of the First and Second Temples. In recent years, it's also a day to mourn other tragedies that have darkened Jewish history - the Romans putting down the Bar Kochba revolt, mass murders of Jewish communities during the Crusades, expulsions from England, France, and Spain in the Middle Ages, and the Holocaust.

Remembering Rabbi Dow Marmur z”l

We have lost one of the G'dolay ha'dor, one of the rabbinic giants of our time. Rabbi Dow Marmur's life reflected the triumphs and tragedy of 20th Century Jewish life, beginning in Poland on the eve of the Shoah to his last days in the State of Israel. He was truly brilliant, incisive, and witty, with unshakable integrity.

For Some of Us the Holidays Are Just…Hard

As we head into the holiday season, I am acutely aware of how much different this year is going to be than previous ones. I will be celebrating without my mom for the first time. My mother died in January 2021, and I'm still dealing with the unexpected waves of grief that wash over me, sometimes out of nowhere. As I head into this first winter holiday season without her, I'm not quite sure I know what to expect, other than everything is going to be very different.