A Tradition of Service for Two Generations
Jerusalem Memorial Chapels was founded to improve the quality of time a family spends together to honor and celebrate the memory of a lost loved one. Every aspect of our concierge service is based on this principle as we recognize that these precious moments should be spent reflecting and sharing memories with loved ones.
You have the option to handle all of the funeral arrangements online through our interactive web portal, in person or a combination of both. Our Jewish Funeral Directors are always available via phone, text or in-person 24 hours a day. From guidance on Jewish traditions to picking out the proper design of a monument, we will make sure every detail is handled properly and more importantly at your convenience.
The Jewish Funeral
A Jewish funeral focuses as much upon the deceased as it does on those loved ones the or she left behind. As with many elements of Jewish tradition, it is a study in contradiction. The funeral is the acknowledgment of a life and a means for mourners to begin coming to terms with their loss. It is significant and dignified, yet simple and uncomplicated. It is sadness placed with the hope of better things to come. Jewish tradition puts value in simplicity. Plain wooden caskets are usually preferred. Ornate caskets are seen as stealing focus from what's most important, the mourners.
MEANING OF A JEWISH FUNERAL
A Jewish funeral sets itself apart from the funerals of other traditions in that they are viewed as an interactive event, where the community comes together to bury their loved one, both figuratively and literally.
Jewish tradition is rich with funeral customs, accrued over the entirety of Jewish history. These customs dictate how a body should be prepared, burial procedures, who is considered a mourner, a mourner's responsibilities, and a host of other details.
Funeral arrangements are the choices made for every aspect of the funeral service. This is a conversation with our funeral director where he will describe all of the choices and make sure everyone understands their meaning and significance.
THE CHAPEL SERVICE
A Jewish funeral can be held in a chapel or sanctuary. This means that all religious prayers, eulogies, and funeral rights are completed in the chapel before making the journey to the cemetery for the burial. Before a chapel service begins, mourners may greet family and friends who are attending the service, have some final private moments, and meet with clergy.
THE GRAVESIDE SERVICE
A Jewish funeral can be held at the location of the grave in the cemetery, known as a "Graveside Service". This means that all religious prayers, eulogies, and funeral rights are completed at the cemetery and the burial service takes place immediately. Before a Graveside Service, mourners may greet family and friends at the office of the cemetery, have some final private moments, and meet with clergy.
A JEWISH BURIAL
The Jewish burial service is an essential part of the overall funeral service. Religious tradition holds that a soul can not return to heaven until the body it inhabited has been laid to rest, and, the casket fully covered with earth. Until then it remains in a state of limbo. Therefore, as a service to the deceased's soul, funeral burials are held as quickly after death as possible.
The Bible and Jewish tradition are clearly and consistently pro-burial and anti-cremation, considering the burning of the body a terrible violation of the person's memory and God's image. The fact that cremation is being chosen by more families today than in the past, Jerusalem Memorial Chapels will provide the service should families request it. It is our responsibility as a Jewish owned and operated funeral home to make sure that those families requesting it are not doing so based upon common misconceptions and inaccurate information regarding its supposed ecological and environmental benefits and/or its financial savings.
PERIOD OF MOURNING
Mourning, as a Jewish tradition is highly ritualized, and has evolved over centuries as a method of helping the immediate mourners heal. This process is important because as much as we want to remember those we've lost, we also eventually need to give ourselves permission to move forward.