Photo Credit: Jerusalem Burial Society
Hallowed Halls of Eternal Life, the Har Menuchot catacombs.

In many communities across the globe, the seventh day of the Hebrew month of Adar is considered the special day of the Chevra Kadisha. The origin for this custom is that this is the day on which Moshe Rabeinu passed away. Since it was Hashem Himself who buried Moshe, the Chevra Kadisha is “off duty,” as it were.

Since its inception over 80 years ago, the Jerusalem Burial Society has observed a fast on this day, followed by a festive meal at nightfall. “The fast is to atone for any inadvertent disrespect shown to the deceased,” explains CEO Moshe Shimon. “During Minchah, we lein the Torah reading for fast days and also recite Selichot. Then we visit all the graves of the people who were buried in the past year and ask mechilah in case we failed to show proper respect in any way.”


Shimon and other members of the Chevra Kadisha state that their goal is to provide families with reassurance through empathy, personal attention and understanding. “We never forget for a moment that for the loved ones of the deceased, this is one of the most difficult times of their lives.”

Due to the custom in Yerushalayim of having burial take place on the same day of death, there are times when the burial society must perform multiple burials on one day, sometimes, at very late hours. “Despite the strain this schedule puts on our staff, we make every effort to maintain the most professional standards. For us, it might be our eighth burial on the same day, but for the bereaved person, it’s the loss of someone precious and irreplaceable,” says Shimon.

The dedicated team at the Jerusalem Burial Society, the largest chevra kaddisha in the capital city, offers round-the-clock support to grieving families, ensuring that personal needs and wishes are respected within the framework of halachah.

For families investigating options for burial on Har Hamenuchot in Yerushalayim, Shimon explains that there are various cost-effective options that don’t “break the bank,” for example, the high-tech subterranean burial spaces, called Minharot Olam, or Hallowed Halls of Eternal Life.

This underground cemetery has earned admiration for its innovative design and functionality, and has been endorsed by leading halachic authorities including Harav Asher Weiss and Jerusalem’s Chief Rabbis. Accessibility is a priority, with elevators and golf carts easing movement around the site. Safety measures include 24-hour surveillance cameras and an efficient intercom system. Modern conveniences such as WiFi and mobile phone reception are integrated throughout the site. Importantly, a state-of-the-art temperature control system ensures a steady temperature, creating a comfortable environment for funerals and memorials regardless of the weather conditions.

The aesthetic appeal of the Hallowed Halls is enhanced by a striking art installation by renowned artist Gabriel Yvelle. Composed of an intricate combination of metal and colored glass, these large spherical structures are a visual tribute to life’s continuum and perpetual light.

Despite their innovative features, Shimon emphasizes that the Hallowed Halls hark back to age-old traditions. “The concept of an underground cemetery is as old as the time of Avraham Avninu, who buried Sarah Imeinu in Me’aras HaMachpeila. Today, we are simply adapting these time-tested traditions to our technologically advanced age.”

For more information please visit



Previous articleNetanyahu: If We Stop the War We Lose the War
Next articleIsrael Sets 24 Tishrei as National Oct 7 Remembrance Day