No one likes to think about death, but a basic tenet of Judaism is the obligation to value and serve the deceased, to extend dignity beyond a person's physical demise.
The phrase Chevra Kadisha means ‘Holy Fellowship’, and refers specifically to a Jewish Burial Society. That is, a group of volunteers who carry out the final rites in the spirit of chesed shel emet, ‘true loving kindness’: respecting the dignity of the deceased, ritual purification, tahara, dressing the deceased and final preparation for burial.
These acts are traditionally done not by some anonymous funeral parlor employees, but by respected members of the community, and it is considered a great honor to join a Chevra Kadisha.
If you are interested in learning more about our Chevra Kadisha project, or wish to take part of this important mitzvah in the future, please contact Dan Lessner at: firstname.lastname@example.org