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About Cemetary: Funeral Practices

A Jew dies. The family should lay him down on the floor, his legs towards the exit (“From dust you were made and to dust you will return”), light two candles near the headboard, cover up the body with a white canvas and leave the house. A chevra kadisha (funeral company) conveys the body (the legs are still pointed to the front) from the house to the beit tahara (funeral home, situated near the cemetery) by hearse. After taking the body from the house, the chairs ought to be turned upside down so Death cannot sit on them again. Water from the dishes should be poured out as the Angel of Death may leave a trail on them. Mirrors should be covered (these are local and ludic customs). It is forbidden to prepare anything connected with the funeral before the death. After the death they start to dig the grave (it is always made in the earth) and sew the tachrichim – special, simple burial clothing without any adornments, made from the cheapest white canvas. Members of the chevra kadisha begin ritual ablutions to purify the body, which is required at the funeral. Before the funeral, customary prayers are said, and the coffin (it is simple without any ornaments) with the body inside is lowered into the grave. The grave is then filled in by the mourners. According to the law, halacha embalming and cremation are forbidden.

Mourning consists of three stages. The first one, called shiva begins on the day of death and lasts seven days. Those who are in mourning say prayers and cannot leave the house (except for the Sabbath) or prepare any food (it is given by family members or acquaintances).They don’t eat meat or drink wine. They cannot touch the bed of the dead person, they don’t wash, have their hair cut, or shave; they wear canvas shoes and sit, if necessary, on something very uncomfortable. They cannot listen to music, and the men don’t study the Torah. The second stage of mourning lasts 30 days and it is still forbidden to have your hair cut, wear new clothes, take your place in the synagogue or take part in joyful celebrations. Mourning after the death of a parent lasts 12 months –during which, for 11 months, children (especially sons) should take part in services every day and say the Kaddish for parents, fast and give alms. During the mourning period, the colours of clothes should be sober. Dead people are mentioned in every Yizkor prayer and every anniversary of their death – Yahrtzeit.


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Opening hours

Jewish Cemetery at the Bracka street is opening:

at Sunday to Friday (except a Jewish Holidays)
1st April - 1st November
at 9 - 17 o'clock
2nd November - 31st March
at 9 - 15 o'clock

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Fundacja Monumentum Iudaicum Lodzense
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