On Seeing a Change for the Worse and Death Is Near

white seagull flying against blue sky

Go, for YHVH sends for you.
Go and YHVH will be with you.
(3 times)

YHVH blesses you and watches over you.
YHVH Presence shines upon you and sheds grace all around you.
YHVH garbs you in light and bestows peace upon you.

May Your angels come to _______’s sides.
On her right, Michael, carry our prayers;
on her left, Gavriel, protect her;
before her, Uriel, light her way;
behind her, Raphael, heal all hurts;
and over her head and all around her,
Shekhina, may she rest within your wings.

Be strong and of good courage;
don’t be afraid for YHVH is with you wherever you go.

As an eagle rises within her nest and hovers over her young,
as she spreads her wings, takes them, and bears them upon her wings,
awake, North wind and come, South,
blow upon my garden that the spices within may flow out.
Let my beloved come into her garden and eat its precious fruits.

Open the gates.

YHVH will keep you from all evil, will watch over your soul.
YHVH will guard your leaving and your coming in
from this time forth and forever.

(At the presence of the departure of the soul from the body:
stand and look into person’s face)

Shema Yisrael Adonai Eloheynu Adonai Ehad.

Vicki Hollander is a rabbi and works as a marriage and family therapist in Vancouver, B.C.

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