Kavod v'Nichum and Gamliel Institute provide resources, education, and training along the Jewish end-of-life continuum: from visiting the sick and pre-planning, to care for the body after death, to providing comfort to the mourners.
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This Year’s Online Conference

The 18th Kavod v’Nichum North American Chevrah Kadisha and Jewish Cemetery Conference will be held as an online event this year.           Register Now!


The online program includes major speakers for plenary sessions presenting over 40 workshops with outstanding teachers. All sessions will be taught through Zoom and recorded, so attendees will get to see as many sessions as desired. Some of the outstanding topics to be included this year include:

    • COVID-19 and taharah
      • Liturgy for virtual taharah
    • Pandemic challenges and nechamah – some examples:
      • inability to comfort loved ones in the hospital
      • inability to have funeral and burial as a family
      • inability to share food and comfort at shiva minyan
    • New translation of Ma’avar Yabok
    • Taharah safety in dangerous times
    • Elders and youngers in conversation
    • Jewish Sacred Aging
    • Recognizing unrecognized loss – miscarriage, abortion, stillbirth
    • Understanding tahor and tamei
    • Moving toward gender inclusive taharah

Click here to see the preliminary online conference program.


The conference will take place online from June 7-10, 2020, Sunday through Wednesday, with daily plenary and workshop sessions, informal schmoozing, and even opportunities for poster sessions and “evening-like” programming. We’re excited about the amazing teachers who will be sharing their wisdom!

Plenary Sessions

The program includes four plenary sessions in which particularly relevant topics are presented and discussed with the entire conference attendance. Our plenary speakers are well known rabbis, educators, and teams of panelists who elucidate the topics at hand with sensitivity and wisdom. This year’s plenaries include such topics as:

  • Chevrah Kadisha in the Coronavirus Age
  • Nechamah in the Time of Pandemic
  • Birthing New Liturgy
  • The First Decade of the Gamliel Institute

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Workshop Sessions

Workshops are the meat of the conference and are offered in clusters of up to four simultaneous workshops, related to four tracks (main topics).  Each day includes two workshop time-slots, or up to eight workshops per day. Each workshop is independent and will be in its own Zoom room. Each workshop instructor has the option of providing handouts, which we will post as PDF files for attendees to download or view online. The workshops range through relevant topics in taharah, Chevrah Kadisha, cemetery issues, community, and mourning and grief. The instructors include a wide range of experienced teachers, all of whom are outstanding in their topic area, along with their abilities to teach and interact with students.

Evening-Program-Like Sessions

The program includes some “evening” programming – sessions that at an in-person conference would be offered as evening programs.  These are less demanding in general than the workshops, and are often complementary to the topic areas covered in the rest of the conference. This year these will focus on photography, tachrichim knots, story telling, and music.

Poster Sessions – Got A New Idea? Share it!

We want to learn from you. The conference program includes special times for innovations to be presented as “posters”. Normally, posters are displayed on easels around a hall, with dedicated times when authors can present and discuss their materials with attendees.  In our online format, we will post authors’ materials as PDF files for attendees to view and consider throughout the conference and beyond, with dedicated Zoom sessions for authors to discuss and present their ideas.

If you want to present your ideas, books, articles, or artwork as a poster at the conference, please fill out the Poster Presenter Form, so we can include your work in the schedule and post your materials accordingly.

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No Gamliel Day of Learning This Year

In addition to the normal conference programming, the Gamliel Institute usually offers a one-day “Day of Learning” series of classes in conjunction with the conference. This year we will not be holding a separate day for this due to the extensive online time attendees will have already spent during the conference. Aspects of this will simply be included in the conference program this year.

Conference Registration – Register NOW!

Register for the conference here

This year we offer three categories of conference registration:

    • full conference participation – access to all sessions and all recordings
    • partial conference participation – attending fewer than half of the sessions (honor system), and no access to recordings
    • chevrah group rate – if three or more members from the same chevrah register, they all receive discounted rate, with access to recordings



If  you who have registered and paid before April 1st, we will get in touch with you and offer you the following options:

  • Apply your payment to the on-line conference and apply the remainder as a future credit towards books or courses
  • Apply your payment to the on-line conference and request a refund for the difference
  • Apply your payment to the on-line conference and donate the difference to our conference scholarship fund.

Recordings will be made available to full conference registrants approximately three weeks after the conference.


Bookstore and Shuk – Sell Your Books and Art at the Conference!

There will be an online bookstore at the conference in which you can sell books, artwork, and related items.  If you wish to participate in this part of the conference, please fill in the Vendor Request Form.

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