I didn't want a stranger to speak about my husband after he passed. Cantor Sharon had visited my husband in hospice several times and she had sung to him and prayed with us which brought a peaceful feeling into the room and gave us all comfort.
After he passed, she spent 3 hours with us, just listening to us speak about him, and she wrote and delivered a truly moving eulogy.
She continues to call and check up on me.
While serving as a Fairfax County Community Chaplain (Virginia), I received a 3:00 AM call. A young paramedic had fallen off of an elevated highway while responding to a car accident. I had the sad honor and privilege of attending to the young man, his family, friends and what seemed like the entire fire department in the hospital. The fire chaplain, police chaplain and I officiated his funeral. It was a very sad day in Alexandria, Virginia, but I am so grateful that I was able to provide some comfort.
When officiating the funeral of someone I have never met, I spend a lot of time sitting with family members and friends (when necessary, it's by phone or SKYPE) to hear who that person was in the fullness of life. Loved ones share their memories, painting a three-dimensional portrait of the deceased that not only makes it possible for me to write a eulogy as though I had known the person, but also serves as a cathartic experience for those sharing their stories.
I also walk people through all the traditions associated with Jewish funerals and death and I personalize the service to meet the spiritual and emotional needs of the family.
I am also available for shiva services and unveilings.