What Happens at a Jewish Funeral?

Funeral services for a Jewish decedent may take place entirely at the burial plot. Or, they may begin at the synagogue or funeral home before moving on to the memorial park. Under Jewish tradition, certain individuals are designated as the mourners. These include the parent, spouse, sibling, and children of the decedent. Sometimes, these mourners will perform the ritual of tearing the clothing in the presence of the rabbi, or they may wear something torn to the funeral service. If you’re attending a Jewish funeral and you aren’t officially considered a mourner under Jewish custom, it is not appropriate to greet the mourners before the funeral ceremony. Instead, approach them after the service.

Typically, a Jewish funeral service includes the recitation of prayers. The officiant and others may read psalms together and recite the Kaddish. It is not traditional for music to be played at a Jewish funeral; however, the mourners may sometimes choose to play a selection that was significant for the decedent. It is traditional for all mourners and attendees to form lines after the graveside service. In turn, each person may toss a shovelful of dirt into the grave. Whether or not this will occur depends on the family’s preference and on local regulations.

Skylawn Funeral Home & Memorial Park helps families create healing experiences through our personalized funeral services in San Mateo. If you wish to speak with a funeral director at our memorial park, please call (650) 445-0953.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *