Shivah book aids secular

By Sandy Rashty, September 30, 2013

The United Synagogue has launched a prayer book that can be used by both religious and secular Jews at a shivah.

Sefer HaShiva is designed to engage people who cannot read Hebrew but would like to feel involved in the service. Alongside prayers, it provides explanations, answers to frequently asked questions and more than 30 essays from US rabbis and rebbetzens. It includes messages from Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis and Emeritus Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks.

“Sadly, most of our members will at some stage visit the shivah houses of family and friends,” said Rabbi Michael Laitner, the US living and learning education co-ordinator and assistant minister at Finchley Synagogue.

“We hope that this book will be of benefit and provide some comfort on these difficult occasions.
“It provides information about the shivah process as well as informative and thought-provoking essays related to the shivah. We are working with communities to make sure it is widely available.”
The prayer book will be available by the end of the year.

Last updated: 10:45am, September 30 2013