Shavua tov, dear friends.

On Sunday, Aaron and I took the ferry over to Salt Spring Island to help bury our cousin Uri Cogan. Uri was buried in land dedicated by a local farming family for a natural green burial site, an area of woodlands, and a beautiful resting place for a soul that had loved this island for many years.

Uri was born in Haifa, had served in the IDF, and then come to Canada with his wife Susan. His burial was a muddy affair, as burials can be during our rainy season. And our burials are a very physical rite, with all present engaged in getting their hands dirty, as it were.

Last Friday evening one of our congregants asked about the word “levayah” which is the word we use for funeral/burial. Levayah means to accompany. As a community we have suffered a loss, just as the more direct mourners suffer, when someone dies in our midst. It is a mitzvah to accompany those mourners, as we accompany the deceased to their burial. We do the work of life.

We live in community, in death as in life. May all of you have long life.

With love,Rabbi Lynn