Emanuel Synagogue

  Burial Services
  (photo of Jewish headstone)
Emanuel Synagogue offers a full range of burial services for members of the Jewish community. We maintain a traditional Jewish cemetery and a Chevrah Kaddisha, or burial society, to prepare the dead according to ritual and comfort the mourners.

Cemetery Association
From the beginning, Emanuel Synagogue has provided consecrated cemetery plots so that our members can be buried according to Jewish law and tradition. In 1937 we bought land and developed our own Hebrew Cemetery (see Cemeteries for directions and a map). Burial plots are still available in this facility.

Any Jewish person may be buried in Emanuel Hebrew Cemetery, but the deceased must be prepared for burial in the traditional Jewish manner by our Chevrah Kaddisha (see below). The cemetery is managed by our Cemetery Association, under the chairmanship of Bob Weiss. For more information, or to inquire about buying a plot, contact him through the Synagogue office.

  Chevrah Kaddisha
The Jewish community of Oklahoma City is proud and fortunate to have members who dedicate themselves to performing the traditional rituals that surround death and mourning. Our Chevrah Kaddisha (Holy Society) is comprised of men and women who are members of Emanuel Synagogue and other Jewish congregations in this area. For over a hundred years they have been training one another to perform the taharah (ritual cleansing and purifying) and dressing of the deceased, according to ancient laws, customs, and traditions. The members consider this mitzvah an honorable obligation.

What does the Chevrah Kaddisha do?
Jewish tradition has a number of rituals specific to death, burial, and mourning, and the volunteers of our Chevrah Kaddisha are trained to help our members perform them. If you'd like more information about what they do – particularly if you need it because a death has occurred – click here.
  In recent years, several of our members have received additional training at Chevrah Kaddisha national conferences. We belong to the national organization Kavod v'Nichum (honor and comfort), which offers help to local groups and seeks to educate the community about Jewish laws, beliefs, and practices surrounding the end of life.

Emanuel's Chevrah Kaddisha will prepare any Jewish person for burial according to the laws of our tradition. In addition, our members are frequently involved in preparing and providing the meal of consolation, the first meal for the mourners following their return from the cemetery, and in helping the mourners during shivah, the first week of mourning, with arrangements such as organizing daily minyans for saying kaddish. For more detail on the Chevrah Kaddisha's services, see What Does the Chevrah Kaddisha Do?.

Not all members perform all tasks, and anyone interested in joining in any capacity is welcome. Please leave your name at the synagogue office and you will be contacted. Most people who involve themselves in these respectful end-of-life rituals find the experience profoundly satisfying.


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