Rabbi David Katz

ALBANY–A new course taught by Rabbi David Katz at B’nai Sholom Reform Congregation in Albany will look at Jewish beliefs and practices surrounding death and afterlife. “Life After Death: Beliefs and Customs” will be offered four Wednesdays beginning Feb. 17, 7-8 p.m. via Zoom.

Does Judaism teach that there is life after death?  If so, what is it supposed to be like?  What if we don’t believe in a “world to come”?  What should we say to our children or grandchildren if we ourselves have doubts? When a loved one dies, what are the first things to do, or not do?

This four-week course will explore many of the Jewish beliefs and practices surrounding death: the meaning behind placing pebbles on gravestones; the best yahrtzeit candle; why a ribbon is torn before the funeral and what the words mean to the blessing recited before it is cut; why the door at a house of mourning is left ajar and what should be said or not said to a mourner; and more.

Registration is required. Cost is $20; for the community and for B’nai Sholom members, it is $15.  Registrants will receive a confirmation e-mail with links to access the course.

The B’nai Sholom office at 518-482-5283 or office@bnaisholom.albany.ny.us can provide details.