5 Things People Often Forget When Planning a Funeral

5 Things People Often Forget When Planning a Funeral

Death brings a very challenging time, especially if you lose someone close to you. You find yourself with the task of planning a funeral for someone you love, even though you are mourning. Even with family and friends around, it is easy to overlook some important things. That is why you need to know the top things to remember in such a situation. This will help you make things flow smoothly until the final burial day. Go through this article to find some crucial information for such a time of need.

The Wishes of the Deceased

Many people usually state what they desire to happen during their funeral. However, this may be impossible in the event of sudden death due to an accident or illness. Therefore, you need to consult those who were close to the deceased. They will help shed light on the kind of funeral arrangements to make. This will be an excellent way to honor their memory.

In some cases, it could be minor things like specific dressing preferences or an item they wanted buried with them. Others give details such as practices they don’t like and what would happen to their body. You should consider the wishes of the deceased over other plans you may have.

Budget

If you ask someone mourning, a funeral is a chance to celebrate the life of the departed. This can mean honoring their life with the best sendoff service. However, this should not be the reason for spending excessively on the arrangements. Things like the coffin, the headstone, and other additions can make the funeral preparations expensive. Focus on giving a good sendoff without leaving the family in a tough financial spot.

Most people prefer a simple funeral to help the family save money. Try to create a budget with the immediate family and stick to it.

Communication

Communication is vital in planning any event. You may want to give those grieving some time alone, but keep the communication lines open. Include them in decision-making and allow them to participate where they can. This consultation will help things flow smoothly and give the mourning family members the desired funeral.

Sometimes, other bereaved family members may have something they need you to add or remove from the plans. Therefore, you should always get time to get feedback from them and listen to their desires. You should also communicate with the presiding rabbi and other service providers. Ensure they know the correct date and time for the funeral to avoid inconveniences.

Personalize the Experience

As the family and friends of the departed, this is the chance to say goodbye to the person you loved. Therefore, your focus should be on what the close people would prefer. The ceremony should give them closure and create a good, lasting memory of their loved one. You can play specific songs, remind them of beautiful memories, or create an intimate session. 

Telling People

Things can get hectic, especially if you have limited time to plan. However, you must remember to send the funeral details to important people like neighbors, friends, and relatives. Create a list of people you want to attend and ensure they all are informed. This list should also include people that the deceased would want to come. If you have people living far away, you must give them time to travel to the occasion.

Conclusion

It is important to remember that the funeral experience makes a significant mark in the lives of those affected. Therefore, do all you can to create a personalized experience. When you focus on the family, you can remove any unnecessary activities. Whether you want to have an intimate function or open it to those who wish to attend, ensure you don’t overspend. As a family member, you can ask for help from a friend to help take off some of the burden. Don’t strain yourself and miss the time to mourn your loved one.

By: Katherine Robinson, a writer for West Memorials

 

When Should Yahrzeit Candles Be Lit?

When Should Yahrzeit Candles Be Lit?

When Should Yahrzeit Candles Be Lit?

Yahrzeit candles hold a profound significance in the Jewish faith. Many know what they are, and why we light them, but a commonly asked question is, “When should Yahrzeit candles be lit?” 

The True Meaning Behind Yahrzeit Candles

The lighting of a Yahrzeit, or Yiskor candle, symbolizes your loved one’s soul and spirit. By lighting it, you and your family are keeping the deceased’s memory alive within the hearts of family and friends. Besides honoring their memory, these serve as a reminder of the spiritual connection that transcends physical life. This tradition is deeply rooted in the Jewish practice of honoring and remembering the deceased. 

When Should You Light Yahrzeit Candles?

It is customary to light Yahrzeit candles on five important occasions throughout the year, including:

The Anniversary Of A Loved One’s Passing

Also known as “year time” in Yiddish, Yahrzeit marks the anniversary of a loved one’s death. The deceased’s closest family members observe this day as a time of reflection for the person who passed.

In most cases, those observing Yahrzeit will light the memorial candle that burns for 24 hours, attend synagogue services, and recite prayers, especially the Mourner’s Kaddish.

Yom Kippur

Many families light the Yahrzeit memorial candle at sunset on the eve of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. It’s the holiest day in the Jewish calendar, dedicated to fasting, prayer, and repentance. Lighting a Yahrzeit candle allows individuals to honor those who have passed on during their personal atonement and reflection.

Shemini Atzeret

Shemini Atzeret is the eighth day of the Jewish holiday of Sukkot and marks a time of assembly and prayer. A Yahrzeit candle is lit at sunset on the eve of Shemini Atzeret, allowing you to reflect on the deceased while celebrating the close of the festival season.

Passover

During Passover, a Yahrzeit candle is lit at sunset on the eve of the last day of the holiday. Passover is a time of renewal, and lighting a Yahrzeit candle is a tribute to any family member who can no longer participate in the celebration.

Shavuot

A Yahrzeit candle is also lit at sundown on the second day of Shavuot, which celebrates the giving of the Torah at Mount Sinai. Lighting this candle allows families to remember their loved ones while renewing their commitment to the Torah and Jewish teachings. 

Keeping The Memory Alive

By lighting Yahrzeit candles on these significant dates, you honor and remember your loved ones in a traditional, meaningful way. 

Star Of David Memorial Chapels Is Here To Help

We offer an online tool for Yahrzeit reminders, please click here and enter your loved one’s date of death by Hebrew date or according to the Gregorian calendar. For Yiskor dates and candle lighting reminders, follow us on Facebook

If you need assistance with planning funeral services or have further questions about dealing with a loved one’s passing, our funeral directors at Star of David Memorial Chapels, on Long Island, New York are here for you. Please contact us at 631-454-9600 to learn more about our services.   

Transforming Grief Into Growth

Transforming Grief into Growth: A Journey Through Loss

Transforming Grief Into Growth
Photo by Freepik

Courtesy of Justin Black, bereaving.net

 

Losing a loved one is a universal, yet uniquely personal experience that can deeply affect your emotional well-being. During such times, the path to healing may appear obscured by the shadow of grief. However, it’s in navigating this challenging journey that you can discover resilience and growth.

This blog aims to guide you through transformative steps that can help you cope with loss, embracing it not just as an end, but as a catalyst for personal development and renewal.

Patience is Key to Healing

The journey through grief is not linear, nor is it bound by any timeline. You may find that your path is marked by ups and downs, moments of clarity followed by bouts of sorrow. It’s essential to offer yourself kindness and patience during these times, understanding that healing cannot be rushed. Accepting that there will be good days and bad days helps in setting realistic expectations for yourself and supports a healthier, more compassionate process of healing.

Engage in Meaningful Activities

Seeking out activities that provide a sense of purpose and connection can be a healing experience. Whether it’s volunteering for a cause you’re passionate about or engaging in community activities, these experiences can offer a sense of belonging and fulfillment. Engaging in meaningful pursuits can help shift your focus outward, fostering a sense of contribution and connection to the wider world.

Realistic Expectations Foster Healing

During times of grief, it’s important to set achievable goals for yourself, recognizing your emotional limits. Accept where you are in your healing journey and set expectations that are kind to your current state of being. This understanding promotes a healthier healing process, preventing unnecessary pressure and disappointment that can come from unrealistically high expectations.

Consider Pet Companionship

Adopting a pet brings a wellspring of unconditional love, companionship, and solace during challenging times, offering a comforting presence through life’s ups and downs. 

Embrace Personal Development Through Grief

Grief, while profoundly painful, also holds the potential for significant personal growth. As you traverse this difficult path, you may uncover strengths you never knew you had and learn to appreciate life from a new perspective. This process of self-discovery can lead to a deeper understanding of yourself and a renewed sense of purpose. Allow yourself the space and time to fully experience your emotions, recognizing that through vulnerability, you can find your way to healing and growth.

Education as a Pathway to the Future

In the journey of healing, envisioning a path forward can be a powerful step toward renewal. For instance, pursuing further education, such as an MBA or another advanced degree, can unlock doors to leadership roles and enhance earning potential, providing a reinvigorated sense of purpose.

Opting for online degree programs can save time in the process, making it easier to balance life’s responsibilities with academic pursuits. This transition not only aids in personal growth but also opens up a new horizon of professional opportunities.

Creative Expression Aids Healing

Finding a creative outlet for your emotions can be incredibly therapeutic. Whether it’s through writing, painting, or any other form of art, expressing your grief creatively can help process your feelings. This form of expression can be a powerful tool for healing, allowing you to externalize your emotions and view them through a different lens.

Seek Professional Help

If you find your grief overwhelming, consider reaching out for professional help. Therapists and grief counselors are trained to provide the support and strategies needed to navigate through loss. Seeking professional assistance is a sign of strength and commitment to your healing journey, offering a supportive space to explore your emotions and develop coping strategies.

While the loss of a loved one is an undeniably painful experience, it also presents an opportunity for profound personal growth and transformation. By embracing your grief, practicing patience, and seeking out meaningful activities and support, you can navigate through this difficult time. Remember, healing is a journey, not a destination, and it’s okay to seek help along the way. Through these steps, you can find a way forward, gradually moving towards a place of renewal and strength.

 

Star of David Memorial Chapels is Here for You

For compassionate and dignified funeral services that honor your loved ones in keeping with Jewish traditions, contact Star of David Memorial Chapels on Long Island, New York, at 631-454-9600 to learn how we can support you through this difficult time.

Jewish Mourner

What is Forbidden During Shiva?

Is there anything forbidden during Shiva? If you follow the Jewish faith, Shiva marks a profound period of Jewish mourning and reflection following the loss of your loved one. This week-long observance allows you to grieve in a supportive environment with those you care about. However, Shiva has plenty of activities mourners should refrain from to honor this Jewish tradition correctly. Understanding these will help you treat this time with the respect it deserves.

Activities To Avoid During Shiva

Work and Daily Routine Activities

Shiva is a practice that highlights the Jewish belief in the value of life and the importance of honoring those we’ve lost. For this reason, everything pauses in a mourner’s life, including going to work or daily routines. Remember to dedicate this time to mourning, reflection, and spending time with family members.

Grooming and Beauty Treatments

During Shiva, it’s customary to not focus on beauty. Most Jewish families will cover every mirror in their homes and avoid shaving, wearing makeup, or wearing new clothes. By adhering to this tradition, you are displaying your sorrow and reverence, showing that you are focused on honoring your loved one’s memory instead of worrying about your own appearance.

Social Activities Outside Of The House

Mourners traditionally stay in their homes and avoid social activities during Shiva, as this period is meant for contemplation and remembrance. This practice will help you create a private space where your family can support each other without being disturbed by the outside world.

Wearing Leather Shoes

Many mourners avoid wearing leather shoes during Shiva as a sign of humility and a closer connection to the earth. According to this tradition, leather symbolizes luxury and comfort,  which every mourner should avoid when grieving. If you still wish to wear shoes, opt for canvas, rubber, or any other appropriate material.

Engaging in Entertainment and Leisure Activities

Anything involving entertainment and leisure is avoided during Shiva to maintain its sanctity. This challenging time is for the community and family members to come together in support and remembrance. Focusing on your loved one’s life instead of personal enjoyment will help you cope with your loss.

Additional Activities to Avoid

Reflection and remembrance are the core themes of Shiva, and while it may seem obvious that mourners would refrain from certain activities due to their grief, additional acts should intentionally be avoided. This includes intimate relations and tasks associated with laundry. What may seem astonishing, is that necessities, such as basic food preparation should be abstained from as well. 

Learn More About Shiva

Shiva is a significant part of the Jewish mourning process, offering everyone a period to grieve and remember the deceased. If you’re looking for more information about planning or sitting Shiva, our partner Shiva.com is a great resource.  Our funeral directors at Star of David Memorial Chapels, on Long Island, New York, are also available to provide any assistance that you may need. Please contact us with any questions at 631-454-9600.

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5 Things You Need to Know When Planning Your Own End of Life Care

End-of-life care is a deeply personal and, understandably, difficult topic to discuss for many individuals and their family members. However, preparing everything ahead of time will give you peace of mind and ensure your loved ones will respect your wishes. If you’re looking to start this process, here are five crucial aspects to think about when planning your end-of-life care.

1. Understanding Your Care Options

End-of-life care has many services to support you during your final years. Hospice care, for instance, gives you and your family access to a reliable support system at home or a facility if you’re terminally ill. On the other hand, palliative care focuses on keeping you comfortable and offering treatment if you’re suffering from a serious illness. By learning more about what’s available, you can make a decision that aligns with your needs and preferences.

2. Legal Documents Are Important

Advance directives stating your healthcare preferences beforehand are essential, especially if you’re ever unable to communicate. This includes a living will specifying which treatments doctors can use to keep you alive and a healthcare proxy to make medical decisions on your behalf. Having these documents will help protect your final wishes and relieve your loved ones from making difficult decisions on your behalf.

3. Financial And Funeral Planning

End-of-life care costs can be expensive, so always plan ahead as a way to reduce your financial burden. Consult with a financial advisor to explore insurance options and learn more about which benefits you’re eligible for under Medicare and Medicaid. Also, you can begin contributing to savings for end-of-life expenses, such as healthcare, or move forward with funeral pre-planning. Once you decide on your plans, including any funeral arrangements made, discuss them with your loved ones to prevent confusion or conflict in the future.

4. Communicating Your Wishes

Openly discussing your end-of-life care plan with your family members is difficult, but it ensures they have an idea of what to do when the time comes. It also gives your loved ones the comfort of knowing that they’re honoring your legacy after you’re gone.

5. Seeking Support

End-of-life planning can be overwhelming when going through it alone. However, professionals like healthcare providers, legal advisors, and spiritual counselors will offer valuable resources when you need them. Many support groups or counseling services also provide emotional support for anyone going through this process.

Create An End-Of-Life Plan That’s Best For You

Planning your end-of-life care is an emotional process. But when you understand how the process works, start early, and get the support you need, you’re taking the necessary steps to ensure your final years are peaceful. If you need information related to the cost of a funeral, basic services fees, or you’re considering funeral pre-planning and need further assistance, our funeral directors at Star of David Memorial Chapels, on Long Island, New York, are here to answer your questions. Please contact us at 631-454-9600.

Jewish Caskets in a room

Jewish Caskets Have No Nails

In Jewish tradition, the preparation of the deceased for burial is a sacred ritual governed by strict religious laws and customs. One of the most notable customs is the use of a simple wooden casket, known as an “aron,” which is carefully crafted without the use of any nails or metal fasteners. This tradition has been passed down for generations and still practiced today. So why not include nails in the construction of Jewish caskets? Here are several reasons behind this unique tradition.

Why are Jewish Caskets Constructed without nails?

Firstly, people believe that the absence of nails in Jewish caskets symbolizes the purity and simplicity of the deceased’s life. The use of nails is seen as a form of vanity, as it adds unnecessary embellishment to the casket, detracting from its primary purpose of providing a dignified and respectful resting place for the deceased. By using wooden dowels instead of metal fastenings, the focus remains solely on the deceased and their journey to the afterlife.

Secondly, the absence of nails serves a practical purpose. In Jewish tradition, customs require the body return directly to the earth, without the use of a burial vault. This allows the body to return to the earth as quickly as possible. Beliefs state that the soul cannot rest until the body has fully decomposed. By using a wooden casket with no nails, the body can decompose more quickly and return to the earth in a more natural and timely manner.

Thirdly, the absence of nails is rooted in the belief that the body is treated with the utmost respect and dignity, even in death. In Jewish tradition, the body is  a vessel for the soul. Therefore, treated with the same reverence and care afforded to a living person. The use of a wooden casket with no nails is a way of honoring the deceased and showing respect for their body.

Overall, the tradition of wooden funeral caskets with no nails in Jewish burials is a reflection of the deep respect and reverence that Jewish tradition holds for the deceased and their journey to the afterlife. By using a simple and unadorned casket, the focus remains solely on the deceased and their journey to the afterlife, allowing them to rest in peace.

How Star of David Memorial Chapels’ Funeral Caskets Comply

Each of our funeral caskets conforms to Halachic (Jewish) law in that they are manufactured completely free of metal. Instead of long nails, wooden dowels and glue hold the caskets together. What may change is the species of wood from which the casket is made, the workmanship and detail, and the type of finish. A casket should be chosen based on your budget and what you deem an appropriate choice.

We Can Help!

Our funeral directors at Star of David Memorial Chapels on Long Island, New York, will guide you through difficult times. Whether it is for pre-planning, making funeral arrangements, or selections aligned with Jewish traditions, we are here for you. Please get in touch with us at 631-454-9600.

Celebrating Thanksgiving After the Loss of a Loved One

Celebrating Thanksgiving after the Loss of a Loved One

Celebrating Thanksgiving After the Loss of a Loved One

Is it possible to partake in celebrating Thanksgiving after the loss of a loved one? Whether it be soon after a death occurred or years later, the profound loss of someone close to you can affect how you approach this time of gratitude, togetherness and positive spirits. 

Thanksgiving is traditionally a time to gather with family members and friends, sharing in the joy of laughter, good food, and meaningful conversations. But how can we honor this cherished holiday when our hearts are aching from the absence of a loved one who is no longer physically present?

First and foremost, it is essential to acknowledge that grief takes many forms and it is different for everyone. Therefore, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to navigating this holiday. Each individual’s journey is unique, and it is essential to honor and respect your own emotions and personal needs.

There are several meaningful ways to manage celebrating Thanksgiving after the loss of a loved one. Take into consideration the following suggestions:

1. Visit the Cemetery

Holidays are the perfect opportunities to visit the cemetery. Many people attend the burial and the unveiling on the anniversary of the death. But over time, trips to the cemetery may become few and far between for various reasons. The days surrounding Thanksgiving are convenient to many due to the time off from work or school,  and especially if they are traveling from out of town to see other family members  living near the cemetery. 
 

2. Share Memories

During the day’s festivities, take the time to celebrate the life of and share cherished memories of your loved one. This can be done around the dinner table or in a more private setting. Sharing stories that embody their spirit and impact can help keep their memory alive and foster a sense of connection between family members and friends. 

3. Volunteer or Give Back 

Honor your loved one’s memory by engaging in acts of kindness and giving back to the community. Consider volunteering at a local shelter or donating to a cause that held a special place in their heart. This not only helps you find comfort in assisting others but also perpetuates the values your loved one carried.

4. Start New Traditions 

While maintaining some of the cherished traditions, it can also be healing to introduce new customs to your Thanksgiving celebration. Whether it’s trying out a new recipe, or going for a family hike, these novel traditions can create opportunities for joy and bonding, even in the midst of grief.

5. Practice Self-Care 

Self-care plays an integral role in coping with loss. Embrace the significance of this holiday by taking care of yourself emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Engage in activities that bring you comfort, such as journaling, meditation, or seeking the counsel of a trusted friend or counselor.

Remember that each person’s grief journey is unique, and there is no right or wrong way to approach Thanksgiving after losing a loved one. The most important thing is to find moments of solace, connection, and gratitude amongst the pain. Reach out to your support system, lean on your community, and be kind to yourself.

Star of David Memorial Chapels is Here to Help!

Our funeral directors at Star of David Memorial Chapels on Long Island, New York, are here to guide you through difficult times. Whether it is for funeral pre-planning, making funeral arrangements, or providing resources, we are here for you. Please get in touch with us at 631-454-9600.

  
Star of David Memorial Chapel Managing Grief

Mourning During Tragic Events: Navigating through Collective Grief

Mourning during tragic events differs from mourning an individual loss. In times of great tragedy, such as the loss of multiple lives, it becomes crucial to come together as a community to mourn and heal. There are several ways to navigate through the overwhelming grief, including finding support and implementing coping mechanisms to get through heart-wrenching events.

1. Acknowledge and validate your emotions

Grieving is a natural response to loss, and when faced with the loss of many lives, it is perfectly normal to experience a whirlwind of emotions. Allow yourself to acknowledge these emotions and understand that they are valid. Avoid suppressing or ignoring them, as it is essential to process grief in a healthy and constructive manner.

2. Seek support from others

During times of tragedy, leaning on the support of others is crucial. Reach out to friends, family members, or support groups who can empathize with your emotions. Expressing your feelings and listening to others can provide solace and help in healing together as a community.

3. Create a support network

Organize gatherings or create virtual platforms where people affected by the tragedy can connect and share their experiences. This support network can offer a safe space for individuals to express their emotions without judgment. Coming together as a community helps build resilience and promotes healing.

4. Practice self-care

While grieving, it is important not to overlook self-care. Engaging in activities that provide comfort and solace can help alleviate the pain experienced during this challenging time. Whether it’s practicing mindfulness, spending time in nature, or seeking professional counseling if needed, taking care of yourself is paramount in processing and overcoming profound grief.

5. Share stories and celebrate lives

Remembering the lives lost by sharing stories, photos, and fond memories can contribute to the healing process. Organize memorial events or create online memorials, allowing people to reflect on the positive impact those individuals had on their lives. Celebrating their legacies becomes a way to honor their memory and bring the community closer together.

Working Towards healing

Navigating through the unimaginable pain of losing many lives after a tragedy is undeniably challenging. However, by acknowledging and validating our emotions, seeking support, and practicing self-care, we can gradually find solace and healing.

Remember, the process of mourning is unique to each individual, and it is important to be patient with ourselves and one another as we collectively work towards healing and resilience.

We Are Here To Help

Our funeral directors at Star of David Memorial Chapels on Long Island, New York, are here to guide you through difficult times. Whether it is for funeral pre-planning, making funeral arrangements, or providing grief resources, we are here for you. Please get in touch with us at 631-454-9600.

Overcoming the Loss of a Spouse

Overcoming the Loss of a Spouse

Overcoming the Loss of a Spouse

Overcoming the loss of a spouse is undoubtedly one of life’s most heartbreaking and challenging experiences. Suddenly, the life you had built together is shattered, leaving you feeling lost, alone, and uncertain of how to move forward. While the pain may never completely fade, we firmly believe that healing is possible, and a meaningful life can be rediscovered.

1. Acknowledging and Processing Grief:

Grief is a complex emotion, and it is essential to allow yourself the time and space to mourn, grieve, and come to terms with your loss. It’s okay to experience deep sadness, anger, confusion, and even moments of denial. Seek comfort in your loved ones and consider joining a support group or talking to a grief counselor who can provide guidance during this difficult period.

2. Finding Strength in Connections:

Amid sorrow, surround yourself with a strong support system. Family members, friends, and even online communities can provide immense comfort and companionship during this challenging journey. Share your feelings, share memories, and allow yourself to lean on others whenever you need support. Compassionate connections can help you gradually rebuild your life and find optimism once again.

3. Rediscovering Yourself:

After the loss of a spouse, it’s essential to rediscover your identity and redefine your purpose. Everyone’s journey towards healing is unique, but finding joy outside of your relationship can be instrumental in getting back on your feet. Explore personal hobbies, engage in activities that bring you fulfillment, and consider volunteering or joining a club to meet new people who share similar interests.

4. Embracing Self-Care:

Grieving takes a tremendous toll on our mental, emotional, and physical well-being. Prioritizing self-care is crucial as you navigate this difficult path. Take the time to nurture your mind and body with healthy habits such as exercise, proper nutrition, meditation, and journaling. Remember, self-compassion and self-love play a vital role in healing.

5. Reflecting on the Memories:

While loss brings immense pain, it is crucial not to let it overshadow the beautiful memories you shared with your spouse. Cherish their legacy, their love, and the impact they had on your life. Celebrate their life by creating a memorial, sharing stories, or engaging in activities that hold a special significance to both of you.

6. Seeking Professional Help:

If feelings of grief and loss become overwhelming or prolonged, it’s essential to seek professional help. Grief counseling or therapy can provide guidance on coping strategies and offer a safe space to express emotions, facilitating the healing process. Remember, seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness.

We understand that the journey of overcoming the loss of a spouse is challenging, and there is no single roadmap to healing. But by embracing hope, connecting with others, and taking small steps forward, it is possible to navigate the labyrinth of grief and find meaning and peace once again.

 We Are Here To Help!

Our funeral directors at Star of David Memorial Chapels on Long Island, New York, are here to guide you through difficult times. Whether it is for funeral pre-planning, making funeral arrangements, or providing grief resources, we are here for you. Please get in touch with us at 631-454-9600.



What to Write in a Condolence or Sympathy Card

What to Write in a Condolence or Sympathy Card

What to Write in a Condolence or Sympathy Card

Determining how to communicate with someone when a death has occurred may leave you perplexed. When someone you know experiences a loss, one way to show your support and care is by sending a condolence or sympathy card. However, it can be challenging to find the right words to express your condolences. You don’t want to upset the recipient, but you also want them to know that you are here for them and thinking of them during this difficult time. Here are a few tips on what to write in a condolence or sympathy card that will let the recipient know they are in your thoughts.


Start with a Personal Greeting

Address the recipient by name and using a salutation such as, “Dear [their name(s)].” 


Express Your Feelings

Start the condolence or sympathy card by acknowledging the loss and expressing your sympathy. You can use phrases like, “I’m so sorry for your loss,” “My heart is with you and your family,” or “Please accept my deepest condolences.” These phrases will let the recipient know that you care and that you are sorry for what they are going through.


Share a Memory or a Thought

If you knew the deceased well or have a personal connection, it can be useful to share a fond memory or thought about the person who passed away. This will help the person receiving the card know that you understand and appreciate the person they lost.


Offer Support

Offering support can mean a lot to someone, even if it’s just telling them that you are here for them. A simple “Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help you during this time” or “I’m here whenever you need to talk” can be enough.


Sign Off with Care

When you sign off from your condolence or sympathy card, make sure you include your name and a thoughtful message. You can use phrases like, “With love and sympathy,” “Thinking of you always,” or “Sincerely.” Make sure that you sign off in an appropriate manner, based on your relationship to the recipient(s) which can be a family member, friend, colleague, or other relation.

You are Now Ready to Write (and carry out other thoughtful gestures)

Writing a condolence or sympathy card can be challenging, but it can also be an incredibly meaningful way to show your support and care. Remember to start with a personal greeting, express your feelings, share a memory or thought, offer support, and sign off with care. With these tips, you’ll be able to write a heartfelt condolence or sympathy card that lets the recipient know you are there for them during this difficult time.


Additional ways to share your sentiments and support would be to send or bring an appropriate gift while the mourner is sitting shiva or to make a donation to a charity of their choice. Another thoughtful gesture is to send a thinking of you card on the anniversary of the death, or Yahrzeit. 


Contact our funeral directors at Star of David Memorial Chapels on Long Island, New York, with any other questions surrounding Jewish funerals. Our team will be happy to help you. Call us today at 631-454-9600.