The Changing Face of Jewish Funerals: why cremation is gaining popularity

The Changing Face of Jewish Funerals: why cremation is gaining popularity

For many Jews, it can come as a bit of a surprise when they find that a friend or relative has opted for cremation over burial. Controversy aside (because it is a contentious subject), there are many reasons this is happening.

From the cost to various practicalities, discover why cremation is becoming a more commonly seen celebration for an end-of-life service.

Jewish Funeral Cremation: a growing practice

  • Jewish funeral cremation: the cost
  • Jewish funeral cremation: the practicalities

Jewish funeral cremation: the cost

Cremation is becoming an acceptable choice within the Reform movement. As this increases, there’s already been some spillover into other sectors. However, it will be some time yet before this becomes the norm.

So, why is cremation becoming more popular? After all, if you speak to many who follow the Jewish faith, they can give some pretty compelling reasons why cremation should never, ever be considered.

As with everything surrounding religious tradition (and this certainly isn’t confined to the Jewish faith) change is slow to occur, gradually be accepted, and then eventually becomes normality. When it comes to cremation, the reason it’s becoming more commonplace is down to a variety of factors:

  • Cost
  • Practicalities
  • Environmental impact

While the cost of the actual service doesn’t differ a huge amount for a basic funeral vs. a basic cremation, the cost of the land where the body is buried can be tremendous. This is further impacted by the fact that many Jewish cemeteries have been sold off to private companies, therefore aren’t owned by local synagogues.

This has led to a lack of suitable burial spots. An urn containing ashes takes up a far smaller plot than a body. This not only means that the cost might be less but also allows increased room to bury more people.

Jewish funeral cremation: the practicalities

Another practicality is for those who want their remains to be laid to rest in Israel. The logistics and prices of transporting a body are far greater than taking ashes in an urn.

And then there’s the environmental aspect. While it’s true that Jewish coffins are made from biodegradable materials, these are still much bigger than a small eco-friendly urn. Today’s generations are far more aware of their individual impact on our fragile planet, therefore many are making conscious decisions to reduce their carbon footprint in any way they can. The instances of cremation as an end-of-life choice being written into people’s wills are likely to increase exponentially.

While well over 50% of services in the US (where all denominations are accounted for) are currently cremations, it’s only a matter of time before the numbers also begin to increase within the Jewish community.

However, this is still some years away. Those who’re interested in a Jewish cremation still face many hurdles—one of which is getting valid, impartial information. Thankfully, the subject is gradually becoming less taboo, allowing those who want to get more details to do so without causing distress to those opposed to the practice. 

Want to Know More about Jewish Funeral Cremation? Contact the Jewish Cremation Society Today

The Jewish Cremation Society is your go-to place for everything surrounding this end-of-life practice. From answering all your questions (including the awkward ones that you don’t know who to ask) to putting you in contact with providers in your area, we’ve become the trusted source across the US for all things related to Jewish cremation.

Not only are we the local and national experts, but we’re wholly impartial, unbiased, and don’t apply any pressure to go down either the cremation or traditional burial route.

Our friendly experts are waiting for your call (which is, of course, confidential) visit web link for more information.

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