Limited Space – Reflections on Kaddish

An excerpt from Goodbye, Mom: A Memoir of Prayer, Jewish Mourning and Healing by Arnie Singer The rabbi of the shul I’ve been saying kaddish at recently handed me a card with someone’s hebrew name on it, and asked if I would have them in mind when I said kaddish on their upcoming Yahrzeit. I […]

Shiva Etiquette

The rules of etiquette relating to visiting a Shiva house are designed to help the mourners deal with the pain and sorrow of their loss, and begin the slow healing process. It is important for visitors to familiarize themselves with these rules of etiquette so that they can assist, rather than disrupt, this important stage […]

Nachamu – Consolation

The Shabbat directly following the fast of Tisha B’av is called Nachamu or “be consoled”. The name is taken from the prophet Isaiah who prophesizes the return of the Jewish people from their exile to Israel. The prophecy begins with the words, “Nachamu, Nachamu”. Whenever there is, what seems to be, a superfluous word in […]

Tearing Kriyah

Many of the prohibitions and customs relating to the day of Tisha B’av are the same that relate to a mourner. For example, we sit on the floor and refrain from greeting people. Why then do we not tear kriyah, one of the most fundamental signs of intense mourning, on Tisha B’av? One possible answer […]