The now-president of Kavod v'Nichum mentioned in the above article is a former member of my primary minyan and current member of my tiny minyan. And another former member of my minyan is quoted in the second article.
I have been encouraged to join the PCK by minyan members who are active volunteers of the organization, but I've told them I'll consider it when my younger child goes off to college and I have more time. My husband did a one hour middle of the night shift as a "shomer" to read guard the body and read psalms for a minyan member who died. When a few minyan members have died in recent years, it has been a comfort to the families that we had the PCK so that the preparation of the bodies could be done traditionally, but without having to appeal to an Orthodox group.
I am a member of our Chevra. We only do tahara at this point, no other parts of it. I guess, baby steps. It's very rewarding to be a part of it - especially since I lack skills empathizing with people at end of life and can devote my love and attention to them after quite comfortably.
Kol haKavod! It is a great mitzvah. To be honest, I'm a bit squeamish about the idea of dealing with a dead body, although I suppose I could get over it since I didn't have problems studying the cadaver in an anatomy class I took as a grad student interested in bioengineering. Did you find it hard to do at first?
The President of Kavod v'Nichum mentioned in the above article recently gave an ELI talk (Jewish TED-like talk) about "dying Jewishly" and the work that he does as a member of a chevre kadisha. Here's a link to the YouTube recording of the talk: "Living Jewishly Means Dying Jewishly, Too" YouTube description:
In much of society today, death is to be avoided at all costs - in polite company and modern medicine alike. Jewish tradition, explains Dr. Michael Slater, has a very different approach. In a talk that is part memoir, part history, part communal call-to-action, we see the wisdom of Judaism as not only life-affirming, but death-affirming, as well.
Last Edit: Sept 7, 2015 21:28:25 GMT -5 by Debbie B.