The moments and hours after a person's last breaths are emotionally intense. Rituals of blessing and shrouding the body help loved ones face this transition with the awe it deserves and deepen the meaning.
Henry Fersko-Weiss, Executive Director of the International End of Life Doula Association (INELDA) will discuss the importance and use of ritual throughout the dying process--particularly right after a person's last breaths. Those moments are filled with intense emotion, awe in the face of this momentous transition, and an acknowledgment of the changes this death will bring in the lives of loved ones. Ritual not only helps people move more purposefully through that time, and the hours and days that follow, but gives people a chance to bless aspects of who the person has been and celebrate their life. With the help of those in attendance, Henry will demonstrate such a ritual bringing in elements that speak to the dissolution of the five elements: earth, air, fire, water, and consciousness. Following Henry, Amy Cunningham, a Home Funeral Guide and Licensed Funeral Director will talk about after death care of the body, home viewing, and funerals. Amy will also demonstrate a ritual approach to shrouding the body, utilizing a couple of different shrouds. Attendees will also have an opportunity to participate in that experience.