The painful, painstaking work of Israel's burial societies


November 10, 2023

(JNS) — Menachem Levy says he is “used to death.” A member of Tel Aviv’s chevra kadisha (“sacred society”), he is among a relatively small number of experts in Israel responsible for preparing tens of thousands of bodies each year for Jewish burial. Yet, he says, nothing he has ever seen prepared him for the jarring scenes he encountered in Israel’s south, where he joined with volunteers, led by ZAKA, in collecting the bodies and body parts of victims of Hamas brutality for burial.

“There are no words to describe what I’ve seen,” he tells “These are th...

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