Jewish Unveiling is the time to place a marker for all to learn they too lived
Jewish Unveiling is a custom to unveiling the marker, the cemetery monument also known as the headstone.
When does a Jewish Unveiling take place?
Through the years, the custom to unveil the monument is around the first anniversary when your beloved has passed on.
Why wait an entire year?
The year-long wait is for a number of reasons. For the mourner, it is adjusting to life without their special someone with them. Not hearing their voice and speaking to them is missed as the days, weeks and months go by. A mourner goes through steps
For the deceased, Judaism teaches that the spirit needs an entire year to adjust to the spiritual world.
The cemetery monument is often granite. It is one of the better stones that stands the test of time and elements. The inscription is completed by a skilled stone carver. The inscription can be standard and can include more personal information. The monument company can certainly guide you. As a guide remember that the headstone is to honor by remembering. A cemetery with the markers is the history of the people. Look around and see our Jewish Community. “May their souls be bound up in the bond of eternal life.”
It is the custom to add the Hebrew Name along with the parent’s names. It represents and honors the person and their family before them.
In addition, there are two phrases added in Hebrew that are always added to the headstone monuments.
In Hebrew, it translates to “Here lies”. It uses two Hebrew Letters, the Pey, and Nun.
ת נ צ ב ה “May his/her soul be bound up in the bond of eternal life.” The Hebrew letters are Tet, Nun, Zayin, Bet, Hey
Honoring tribal connection
When a family member is connected to either the Kohen’s (Kohanim), Levis (Levites), and the Israelites They are known as the three tribes of Israel, and we add those symbols to the headstone. Not to be confused with the 12 Tribes of Israel. The three are was The Kohanim is the splitting of both hands. There are many other symbols often added as well. They can be a Jewish Star, Shabbat Candles, the Eternal Light, and many more.
Who conducts an Unveiling Service?
A Rabbi can be called upon to honor the custom of the Unveiling. Plan in advance for the Unveiling especially during the warmer months. The family or the cemetery will supply the cheesecloth covering. At times, the cemetery may be able to supply a few chairs for those that cannot stand on the uneven ground. If extra costs are a factor, it is best to bring your own chairs. Also, bring golf size umbrellas in case of rain.
Jewish Cemeteries – Westchester County, New York, and New Jersey
Sharon Gardens Jewish Division, Valhalla, New York
Mount Eden Cemetery, Hawthorne, New York
Cedar Park Cemetery / Beth El Cemetery, Paramus, New Jersey