The loss of a loved one is a time of sadness, when support from family, friends, and community are especially appreciated. It is often also a time of reflection when perspective can be gained on the essential relationships of life.
The rabbi is available to discuss the death and mourning process. He is also available for discussions relating to end of life care. It is appropriate for a person before his or her death to recite the vidui (confession) prayer. Family and friends also say special prayers and observe traditions during a person's last moments. To learn more, please contact Rabbi Strauchler to arrange for a visit or consultation.
When the time of passing comes, please call one of our two local funeral homes: Steeles Memorial Chapel or Benjamin's Park Memorial Chapel. Please note that such calls should not be made on Shabbat or Yom Tov. The funeral home will contact our Rabbi and arrange for a time and place for the funeral service. They will also arrange for our chevra kadisha to prepare the deceased for burial. When meeting with the funeral home, please specify that you are a member of Shaarei Shomayim and that you would like the simple wooden casket used by our members. Please note: in our community, funerals typically take place at the funeral home or graveside and not in our synagogue building. Read more about our cemeteries.
Details for the funeral will be sent via e-mail to our membership informing them of the date and time of the funeral and shiva. After meeting with the funeral home, you will meet with Rabbi Strauchler who will explain the funeral service in detail. This is also an opportunity to discuss the life of the deceased in preparation for the funeral. Our synagogue provides prayer books and a sefer Torah for the shiva house. We also give a book, dedicated to the memory of the deceased, to the family during the shiva. Our chessed committee often arranges a meal for the shiva house.
Throughout the year of mourning, mourners are welcome to recite the Mourner’s Kaddish at the shul during weekday and Shabbat services. For those who would like to make arrangements for someone to recite kaddish on their behalf, please contact our shamash, Ralph Levine. The rabbi is available for consultation as you prepare the burial stone, and will also assist you in conducting a hakamat hamatzeiva (unveiling) service.
Each year, the shul produces a Yizkor Memorial Book for the members. This book is an important part of our community’s remembrance of loved ones and observance of Yizkor prayer.
Honour the memory of your loved ones by dedicating a memorial plaque or a leaf on our tree of life.
For more information, please contact the shul office.