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Chevrah Kadisha thanks selfless burial team

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At times during the COVID-19 pandemic, there were about nine funerals in a single day. Each was carried out with respect, efficiency and compassion, according to Darren Sevitz, the general manager of Chev Burial Services. He was speaking about the 70 Chevrah Kadisha burial staff at its annual celebratory service and meal on Zayin (7) Adar (the seventh day of the month of Adar).

This is the date of the birth and passing of Moshe Rabbeinu. And because Hashem Himself buried Moshe up on Mount Sinai, it has become a date of special significance to burial societies worldwide. Every year, those involved in burial work for the Chev commemorate this by fasting to atone for any inadvertent disrespect to the deceased. In the evening, the Chev hosts a celebratory meal and tribute to their service.

Though suspended during the pandemic, this year the dinner was a beautiful and meaningful event, graciously hosted by the Glenhazel/Mizrachi community. The dinner was held outdoors in a setting beautifully lit by dozens of candles.

Taharah volunteers, mitaskim, gabboyim, Chev cemetery staff and Chev leadership all attended.  Chev Group Rabbi Jonathan Fox led the moving selichot service asking Hashem for forgiveness.

The chief rabbi and Rosh Yeshiva Nechemya Taylor spoke about the importance of kavod hameis (honouring the departed) and paid tribute to the Chev burial team. Fox thanked the Chev staff and volunteers for their incredible bravery in the past two years when COVID-19 presented them with enormous challenges. He also thanked the Chev leadership for its guidance and vision.

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