Temple Israel

Chevra Kadisha


Our Chevra Kadisha oversees all funeral preparations for departed members in accord with appropriate customs, and also manages the Temple's burial plot at Oak Ridge Cemetery.


Congregation Temple Israel Chevrah Kaddisha (Burial Society) One of the first obligations of a Jewish community is to establish a consecrated burial space for its area residents. Prior to 1930, both Springfield congregations shared a common area at Oak Ridge Cemetery, the city owned cemetery where Abraham Lincoln is buried on the north end of town. By the 1930’s that space was nearly filled and so both congregations established separate sections across an internal road of Oak Ridge Cemetery.

At the time, the antecedent congregation to Temple Israel, B’nai Abraham, was constituted as an orthodox congregation, although one with family seating in the sanctuary. All burials since then are still conducted in the orthodox tradition, with shrouds and a preference for simple caskets. Area mortuaries can easily secure wooden caskets without iron nails upon request.


Burials are scheduled within a day and a half unless interrupted by the Sabbath. Sunday burials are available, but at an additional charge by the cemetery for its workers.

A group of men prepare males for burial, including washing and putting on the shroud. A group of women perform the same ritual for deceased women. This Chevrah Kaddisha function is performed the day before burial, or on the same morning.


Since Temple Israel owns its burial section, it is the Chairman of the Chevrah Kaddisha Committee that actually sells plots to congregation members as needed or far in advance of use. A purchaser pays $900 per plot and a $50 fee to Oak Ridge for recording purposes. Upon payment, a deed is prepared by the synagogue office and sent to the cemetery for registration, and upon registration a copy of the deed is given to the purchaser. Whenever the need for the plot arises, the owner, the congregation, and the cemetery all have records that space has been purchased and where it is.

Please contact the Chevrah Kaddisha Chairman, Erin Sabath , at asnaleah@sbcglobal.net 
to arrange to meet at the cemetery and select burial spaces or to volunteer to assist with the ritual preparations for burial.


All congregation members are encouraged to select and purchase burial space now, and eliminate one responsibility of loved ones at the time of need.

Oak Ridge Cemetery is located on the north side of Springfield.