This is part of a short series on personal conduct at a Jewish funeral.
Lavaya is the Hebrew word for funeral. Lavaya means ‘to accompany’.
On the occasion of a Jewish funeral the family and community accompany the deceased to their final resting place. Family and community participate in the funeral – not the rabbi who guides the proceedings or the cemetery workers who prepare for it.
This two-minute video explains the funeral ceremony and some of its religious and ceremonial meaning. It’s useful information for non-Jews as well, since the community plays an important part.
Depending upon local custom a funeral may be held at a private home, a funeral home, a synagogue, cemetery, graveside or any combination of places. There’s no standard form for a funeral ceremony apart from scripture readings, a eulogy and a memorial prayer.
Respect and dignity are always key portions of any funeral.
Written by Richard J. Paracka