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At times of loss, our clergy are available to members of our congregational family. Please feel free to call on our clergy for questions or support at such times. They will respond with sensitivity and compassion, and will provide you with the information you need to guide you through this process.
Our clergy would be available to visit the individual who is approaching death to recite the Vidui, the Confessional, on behalf of a dying loved one. While the Confessional is not a required “last rite” in Judaism, it is often helpful to the family as a ritual of passage, and includes prayers for healing and for God’s protection for the family.
At the time of death, a family member would call a Jewish funeral director to make arrangements for transfer of the deceased. BHCBE, as a member of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, has signed on to the United Synagogue Funeral Plan for congregation members. This plan includes the traditional preparation of the deceased for burial—taharah (washing) plus shrouds for burial—burial in a wooden casket, with a shomer, a guardian who remains with the deceased until the funeral and recites Psalms on behalf of the deceased. The funeral home, family and rabbi would jointly coordinate the times for the funeral. Should the family not have burial plots in advance, the funeral home will assist in this process.
The rabbi will guide the mourners through the shivah, the seven day mourning period that follows the funeral. Many of our families observing shivah will hold services at their home during the shivah week. The congregation’s Ritual Committee will assist in organizing these services.
Our daily minyan is a valuable resource to those in mourning in the community. Meeting each morning and evening, 365 days a year, it affords the mourners the opportunity to recite the Mourner’s Kaddish in the setting of a community. The members of the minyan are supportive, and offer a warm welcome to newcomers.