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A Loss Worthy of Grief: Jewish Approaches to Bringing Comfort after Miscarriage, Stillbirth, and Neonatal Death
In Jewish life and imagination, the birth of every child represents unlimited hope for the baby and the Jewish community. When the expected baby dies, the profound loss is often suffered in isolation and without the usual support of Jewish tradition. In response, the National Center for Jewish Healing, with the support of UJA-Federation of New York and Plaza Jewish Community Chapel, brought together existing and new materials and resources. We presented a conference entitled, “A Loss Worthy of Grief: Jewish Approaches to Bringing Comfort after Miscarriage, Stillbirth, and Neonatal Death” and produced a special edition of The Outstretched Arm.
Here you will find samples of some of the materials. Use these materials in a creative manner, tailored to your needs or those of your community. Please provide appropriate citations on the materials you use. All materials may be downloaded for free.
The Outstretched Arm (Vol. 9, Issue 1, Fall 2010/5771)
Other Spiritual and Support Resources
Prayers, Poetry, Psalms and Wise sayings:
- The Power Of A Small Ritual After Stillbirth, as told by a grandmother
- A Father’s Story
- A Prayer of Comfort Following a Miscarriage or Stillbirth
- The Value of Support Groups
- Care at the Hospital
- The 5 C’s for Caregivers
- The Rights of Parents Who Experience a Pregnancy Loss
The National Council of Jewish Woman (NY Section), provides a comprehensive list of Pregnancy Loss Support resources for telephone counseling, peer support groups, education materials, national and regional hospital-based support services, and more: www.ncjwny.org/services_plsp.htm
Ritualwell.org is a source for innovative, contemporary Jewish ritual sponsored by Kolot and the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. This section offers resources particular to pregnancy and infertility.
The website for the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards of the Conservative Movement contains a section “Responding To Death.” This section includes legal positions and other writings on miscarriage and stillbirth. In the section “Mourning,” there are two tshuvot on neo-natal death.
This section of the Union for Reform Judaism website contains an article and prayer for pregnancy loss.
- Jewish Support
Nechama Inc. offers an eight week support group dedicated to helping Jewish Families who have experienced infant and pregnancy loss at any time. The groups are run by trained facilitators and meet at Holy Name Medical Center in Teaneck, NJ. All family members welcome. For information about groups and the other services: call Reva Judas (201) 692-9302.