Hail the Traveler! We commit you back from where you came — to the arms of your ancestors. May there be peace where there was anger. May there be healing where there was hurt. Go quickly to the place that your old ones called home. For those who grieve for your passing, let there be healing. For those who grieve for who you were, let there be healing. For those who grieve for what you could have been, let there be healing. Hail the Traveler. We celebrate your journey.Read More
Blessed are those who give meaning to our lives;
holy and precious is the example they leave behind.
We pray: May our sorrows diminish as we recall their strength.
May their wisdom protect us and help us to live.
Let our grief be transformed into tenderness for those who are still with us.
-- Jewish prayerRead More
NOTE: This could of course be adapted for an older woman’s funeral too.
Ye sigh not when the sun, his course fulfilled,
His glorious course, rejoicing earth and sky,
In the soft evening, when the winds are stilled,
Sinks where his islands of departure spread
O'er the warm-colored heaven and ruddy mountain head.
Why weep ye then for him, who, having won
The bound of man's appointed years, at last.
Life's blessings all enjoyed, life's labors done,
Serenely to his final rest has passed;
While the soft memory of his virtues yet
Lingers like twilight hues, when the bright sun is set?
—William Cullen BryantRead More
Shall I cry out in anger, O God,
Because Your gifts are mine but for a while? Shall I forget the blessing of health
The moment there is pain?
Shall I be ungrateful for the laughter,
the seasons of joy, the days of gladness,
when tears cloud my eyes and darken the world and my heart is heavy within me?
Shall I blot from my mind the love
I have rejoiced in when fate
leaves me bereft of shining presences that have lit my way through the years of companionship and affection?
Shall I, in days of adversity, fail to recall the hours of glory You once did grant me?
Shall I, in turmoil of need and anxiety,
Cease blessing You for the peace of former days? Shall the time of darkness put out for ever
The glow of light in which once I walked?
Give me the vision, O God, to see
that embedded in each of your gifts
is a core of eternity, undiminished and bright,
an eternity that survives the dread hours of affliction.
Those I have loved, though now beyond my view, Have given form and quality to my being.
They have led me into the wide universe
I continue to inhabit, and their presence
is more real to me than their absence.
What You give to me, O Lord, You never take away.
And bounties granted once Shed their radiance evermore. —by Morris Adler
Look around us, search above us, below, behind.
We stand in a great web of being joined together.
Let us praise, let us love the life we are lent
passing through us in the body of Israel
and our own bodies, let’s say amein.
Time flows through us like water.
The past and the dead speak through us.
We breathe our children’s children, blessing.
Blessed is the earth from which we grow,
blessed the life we are lent,
blessed the ones who teach us,
blessed the ones we teach,
blessed is the word that cannot say the glory
that shines through us and remains to shine
flowing past distant suns on the way to forever.
Let’s say amein.
Blessed is the light, blessed is the darkness
but blessed above all else is peace
which bears the fruits of knowledge
on strong branches, let’s say amen.
Peace that bears joy into the world,
peace that enables love, peace over Israel
everywhere, blessed and holy is peace, let’s say amein.
-- Marge Piercy
This body that has borne her all her life from birth to death, that gave her breath to live and sight to see, that has served her every need, that has shown you the beauty of her unique person in its eyes and made you aware of her presence in your heart, and without which she would be a mystery to you; we now return to its source with the grace it deserves from us, without our attachment to it but with our lasting love for her.Read More
This body that has borne her all her life from birth to death,
that gave her breath to live and sight to see,
that has served her every need, that has shown you the beauty of her unique person
in its eyes and made you aware of her presence in your heart,
and without which she would be a mystery to you;
we now return to its source with the grace it deserves from us,
without our attachment to it but with our lasting love for her.
Death has nothing to do with going away.
The sun sets
The moon sets
But they are not gone.
In this short Life that only lasts an hour
How much - how little - is within our power
-- Emily Dickinson
There is sacredness in tears.
They are not the mark of weakness, but of power.
They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues.
-- Washington IrvingRead More
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
I carry your heart with me (I carry it in
My heart) I am never without it (anywhere
I go you go, my dear; and whatever is done
By only me is your doing, my darling) [or Dear Grandpa?]
I fear no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) I want
No world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)
And it's you are whatever a moon has always meant
And whatever a sun will always sing is you
Here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
And the sky of a tree called life; which grows
Higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
And this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart
I carry your heart (I carry it in my heart)
-- ee cummingsRead More
May perpetual light shine upon
The face of he who rests here.
May the remembering earth
Mind every memory he brought.
May the rains from the heavens
Fall gently upon him.
May the wildflowers and grasses
Whisper their wishes into the light.
May we reverence the village of presence
In the stillness of this silent field.
-- Adapted from a poem by John Donohue
Her early leaf’s a flower
But only so an hour
Then leaf subsides to leaf
So Eden sank to grief
So dawn goes down to day
Nothing gold can stay.
-- Robert FrostRead More
May the arms of God raise her from the darkness of this planets' earth and surround her with light;
If she is thirsty, give her water in the clearing.
If she is hungry, give her food in the clearing.
May her life on this Earth and the pain of her passing become as a dream to her waking soul, and let her eyes fall upon every lovely sight; let her find her family and friends that have been lost to her, and let everyone whose name she calls call her in return.Read More
Glorified and sanctified be God’s great name throughout the world which He has created according to His will.
May He establish His kingdom in your lifetime and during your days, and within the life of the entire House of Israel, speedily and soon; and say, Amen.
May His great name be blessed forever and to all eternity.
Blessed and praised, glorified and exalted, extolled and honored, adored andlauded be the name of the Holy One, blessed be He, beyond all the blessings and hymns, praises and consolations that are ever spoken in the world; and say, Amen.
May there be abundant peace from heaven, and life, for us and for all Israel; and say, Amen.
He who creates peace in His celestial heights, may He create peace for us and for all Israel; and say, Amen.Read More
Never more will the wind
cherish you again,
never more will the rain.
shall we find you bright
in the snow and wind.
The snow is melted,
the snow is gone
and you are flown:
Like a bird out of our hand,
like a light out of our heart,
You are gone.
- Hilda Doolittle