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Joining a Cemetery Association 2009 - 2019

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“When I moved to the Portland area in 2009, I never imagined that I would become so involved with cemeteries, let alone with their management, upkeep and finances. As I became familiar with the area and the Jewish community, I realized how important it is to honor our heritage and the memories of our loved ones and dedicated myself to the preservation, sanctity and continuity of our Jewish cemeteries, some of which are more than 100 years old. Southern Maine Jewish Cemetery Association is an independent charitable organization unaffiliated with any synagogue and is managed by volunteers. After years of maintaining the cemeteries using revenues raised through plot sales, burial fees, interest income and donations, the current realities of declining plot sales and increasing operating costs have made it impossible to provide adequate maintenance and repair without increased support from community members. Although I have no relatives buried locally, I walk through Mount Sinai and Smith Street Cemeteries and read the headstones and wonder about these people who came before us. I absorb the stories I hear from visiting families about their loved ones and it begins to feel as if I personally knew those who are buried here. It feels good to visit the graves of our ancestors and to take a few minutes in the quiet park-like atmosphere to reflect. When we come to lay stones on the graves of our loved ones and remember them, it is comforting to see a neatly trimmed and well maintained cemetery. It is a good feeling to know that someone is taking care of and maintaining their final resting place. When we pay tribute to those who came before us, we dignify the meaning of our lives too. They are a part of us, we are a part of them and so the covenant passes from generation to generation, L’dor v’dor.” ~ board member, SMJCA. #jewishmaine #jewishcemetery #ldorvdor #chevrakadisha #burial

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Thank you to DMJ for the video

Related organizations:
  Southern Maine Jewish Cemetery Association;