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Chevra Kadisha: Ordinary People Doing Holy Work (Volunteer Opportunity!)

Upcoming Sessions

1. Friday, May 31, 2024 23 Iyar 5784

9:30 AM - 11:30 AMBeth Israel Center, 1406 Mound St., Madison

2. Sunday, June 2, 2024 25 Iyar 5784

10:00 AM - 12:00 PMBeth Israel Center, 1406 Mound St., Madison

For over a century, a devoted group of Jewish Madisonians has cared for our community by preparing bodies for burial according to Jewish tradition. We rely on these volunteers, called the Chevra Kadisha (sacred colleagues), to come together on short notice and provide this critical service, called Taharat Met (sacred washing of a deceased person), regardless of Jewish affiliation or other Jewish engagement. It is a group that shows up because they understand our tradition's wisdom around death and the need for Jewish community members to provide this service. 

The time has come to rejuvenate our community's Chevra Kadisha. Most of the current group has reached the point where they need to pass the torch and train new volunteers who have the energy and physical capacity to do this important work. There is a pressing need for new volunteers. 

Madison's Chevra Kadisha, together with our community rabbis, invite all who are interested in learning what is involved and receiving introductory training to attend one (or both) of our upcoming Chevra Kadisha learning events, which will take place at Beth Israel Center. Following those events, if you are ready to take the next step, current Chevra Kadisha members will invite you to observe and assist in Taharat Met when the need arises. If you are a Jewish member of the Madison community and think you may be able to help in this important community service, please join us!

To RSVP or express interest, please contact Rabbi Renée Bauer (rabbi@jssmadison.org, 608-424-4033) or Kristin Geil (kristin@jssmadison.org) at Jewish Social Services of Madison.

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April 16, 2024 8 Nisan 5784