Death Doula & Home Funeral Support
Meditations, preparations and ritual
to remember the sacredness of death
As part of our mission to seek and support greater connection and meaning in sacred passages, Heartward Sanctuary offers Death Doula and Home Funeral Support. Doula work can include supporting an individual or family with end-of-life preparations, ancestral reconnection or healing, and ceremonies for release or grief ceremonies. Since mainstream funeral homes often require embalming, we're also available to guide families with home funeral preparations for those choosing green or conservation burial options. Home funerals also provide a sacred opportunity for intimate ritual honoring with family and deceased beloved.
Until the Civil War, tending our own dead was a given. Families would prepare the bodies of their beloveds and bury them. This ancient tradition provides intimate grieving time and closure for the living while supporting the passage of the dead. Depending upon one's traditions, practices and beliefs, this would be time for song, prayer, reading or holding silent vigil with the deceased.
We seek to empower our community to reclaim this sacred passage. We provide educational events and ritual spaces to consider options and also prepare for the death of a beloved. We can also customize support through private counsel. Reach out directly for one-on-one support.
Examples of individual and group offerings:
Ancestral healing and reconnection work offers individual and group containers for deepened connection with blood ancestral wisdom as well as healing intergenerational trauma held in our blood and bones. Ancestral reconnection also supports the living in finding relationship with helpful allies of blood or spirit lineage who are available to support their transition to becoming an ancestor. These allies can also support the living to create rituals for their beloved and even unremembered dead.
We offer Becoming an Ancestor workshop series to provide ritual containers to meditate on and prepare for dying. In this workshop, we'll begin some of the necessary work of preparing for end-of-life transition wherever we may be in our life cycles. By diving into both the practical and spiritual realms of this eventuality, we can begin to shift our cultural paradigm of death-phobia and bring sacredness back to this passage. Through discussion, visioning, writing and earth-based ritual, we'll explore our end-of-life desires and aspire to a sacred death. This is an opportunity to explore in a non-denominational, non-judgmental space your wishes for dying. All participants will receive an Advance Death Directive and Five Wishes Form for communicating their requests to their beloveds. This is for anyone regardless of age or health as death meditations may support a more satisfying life.
Participants are also encouraged to intuitively engage with rituals that would best serve their bodies and soul post-death. Part of the commitment to our community is (whenever possible) to continue ritual tending for the deceased in alignment with their final wishes.