The recent discussion and sharing on the OHALAH list of readings for funerals inspired me to take a next step in the development of a manual for klei kodesh. Of course, the job is much bigger than I thought and the time it will take to bring it to the point where I can share allows me to extend an invitation to all of you to contribute to it.
For many years while I served communities, I used a simple template that I created for myself for life cycle ceremonies. I would create a separate document and paste into it the pages and readings I wanted to use, including inserting names, cut them down to fit in a small loose-leaf binder, and bring that to the ceremony.
What I am doing now is revising and reformatting the template for funeral and burial services. The basic outline is traditional as I learned it both from watching rabbis and by looking at other manuals. I’ve also added niggunim and readings which I’ve found meaningful over the years.
But this is not intended to be “Daniel’s Manual,” but rather I see my job as creating as rich a template as possible so that all of us will have access to each other’s ideas and the results of our inspirations.
So, while I’m working on my piece, I invite you to send me the readings and prayers which you have found most meaningful and the place in the funeral or burial service where you insert them. I can’t promise to include every one, but on the whole there is good reason to include as much as possible. Since the “product” will be available at no cost, I don’t think there is an issue with permission as long as we acknowledge the sources.
In the meantime, I also revised and edited the introduction to the manual which I shared a few weeks ago and which includes Reb Zalman’s templates. The revisions primarily expand the concept to include all klei kodesh and not just rabbis. I’ve placed the revised version in the ReSources for Prayer section of the Catalogue on this site . Please replace the previous version.
I’m also hoping to format the pages so that they stand alone and can easily be re-arranged for each time you’ll need to construct a service. And I’m also planning on including sound files within the manual.
Looking forward to receiving your contributions in the near future and sharing the template with you.