Life-Cycle Events - Death

Judaism is the religion of life, but has much to teach at life's end. There is a Jewish way of death, mourning and bereavement, which often begins at the sickbed, when the rabbi will help a family recite the vidui, or final confession, of a dying person. In Judaism, vidui, or confession, is a ritual of transition and release, and is a great comfort to many families.

Once death has taken place, the funeral usually happens within a day or two; the precise time is set by agreement of the family, the funeral home, and the rabbi. Usually the rabbi will visit with the bereaved family before the funeral in order to plan the service, answer any questions, and collect information for a eulogy. After the funeral, the family is encouraged to stay at home for up to seven days. The concept of "shivah" means "seven" and comes from a Biblical verse which describes the period of mourning as one week.

After shivah, immediate family members will recite a prayer reserved for mourners, the Mourner's Kaddish, for up to 12 months after the death, depending on various circumstances. An "unveiling" of the memorial stone can happen at any time which is both comfortable and convenient for the family; it does not have to be a minimum number of months after the death, but should be arranged in advance so that the rabbi can help recite the memorial prayers.

It is impossible to fully describe traditional Jewish mourning practices in just a few sentences, so please feel free to contact us, either before or after a loved one's passing, with questions or concerns. In urgent situations, including imminent death or arranging a funeral, please call the Temple Beth Sholom office at any time. If it is after office hours, there will be at least one emergency contact number given on the outgoing message.

  • CLICK HERE to get information about Temple Beth Sholom’s Cemetery.
  • CLICK HERE to find out about the preparation of the deceased by Chevra Kadisha.
  • CLICK HERE to find out what to do if a family member dies.
  • CLICK HERE for the Temple Beth Sholom Cemetery Rules and Regulations*


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  Temple Beth Sholom
1050 South Tuttle Avenue
Sarasota, FL  34237
 Office: 941.955.8121
     Fax: 941.365.4099

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