If you are Jewish, after a loved one has passed away, you and your family members may choose to hold an unveiling ceremony. During this ceremony, the finished headstones are shrouded, scriptures are read, and memories are shared before the markers are uncovered. This sacred practice offers family members an opportunity to say their goodbyes to the departed and provide comfort to one another.
Here are three tips for planning an unveiling ceremony, so you can honor the deceased respectfully:
- Schedule Carefully: According to Jewish customs, unveiling ceremonies can take place anytime between 30 days following the burial and about a year following the memorial service to respect the formal grieving period. Usually, unveiling ceremonies are scheduled on Sundays as a convenience to the family to avoid interference with the celebration of Shabbat.
- Ask for Help: Some people feel nervous about holding a formal unveiling ceremony, since headstones need to be uncovered and prayers need to be read during certain parts of the event. If you feel apprehensive about holding an unveiling ceremony, don’t be afraid to ask your Rabbi for help. However, keep in mind that since there aren’t official guidelines regarding who can officiate an unveiling ceremony, you are more than welcome to proceed on your own.
- Consider the Guest Count: Traditionally, unveiling ceremonies are small in size. Only the closest friends and family members attend. However, certain prayers, such as the Mourner’s Kaddish, require a Minyan, which is a gathering of at least 10 adults. If you don’t plan on having this many adults in attendance, it’s acceptable for the Kaddish to be omitted. However, if you prefer to have this prayer recited, keep this in mind when determining who will be invited to the ceremony.
If you need to purchase a headstone for an unveiling ceremony, contact Wommack Monument Co. in Bolivar, MO. With more than 60 years of experience and a commitment to customer service, these professionals will help with everything from marker selection and custom headstones to laser etching and personalized artwork. For more information about their business, visit their website or call (800) 743-8233 today.