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Unveiling Ceremony

The Unveiling Ceremony

A headstone (tombstone/monument/marker) is known as a matzevah (monument), and while there is no religious obligation to hold an unveiling ceremony, the custom has gained popularity since the end of the 19th century,

Most communities have an unveiling ceremony a year after the death, while some communities have it earlier. There is no universal restriction about the timing, other than the unveiling cannot be held during Shabbat or work-restricted Jewish holidays.

At the end of the ceremony, a cloth or shroud covering that has been placed on the headstone is removed, customarily by close family members. Services include reading of several psalms, followed by the Mourner's Kaddish (if a minyan is available), and the prayer "El Malei Rachamim". The service may include a brief eulogy for the deceased.

Please schedule your unveiling with the cemetery office, so we can cover the monument or marker and post your service on our community board before you arrive. Congregation Shaarey Zedek clergy are available to help you meaningfully honor your loved one.

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