2017 Natural Death Care Symposium

Learning & conversation to honor Earth Day & National Health Care Decisions Day

Choose from events in Portland, Hood River & Goldendale, WA

Learn about Natural Burial, Family-Directed Funerals & Rituals of Remembrance, tour our region’s leading natural and conservation burial grounds, play a thought-provoking Conversation Game:

Hood River, OR & Goldendale, WA Events
Portland Events
  • Wed, April 19, 7-9pm, Conversation Game, River View Cemetery, Portland, REGISTER, share on FACEBOOK
  • Sat, April 22, 9am-1pm Natural Death Care Workshop (followed by optional tours) River View Cemetery, Portland, REGISTER, share on FACEBOOK

Read what participants said about last year’s Natural Death Care Symposium.

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Skeletons Out of the Closet: Body Farms & Final Wishes

Emily with the skull she gifted her husband on their final Christmas (credit: Steve Duin, The Oregonian)
How a young widow honored her husband’s unusual wishes, and her quest to find other young, widowed parents

Nicaraguan-born Frank Omier was a gifted artist who lived and painted all over the world. His wife Emily thought she knew the perfect present to get him for Christmas. As she told The Oregonian, “I was going to get him an easel. He wanted a skull, instead.” Read More

Jan 29 Workshop: Earth Altars for Troubled Times

Spaces still available!

MorningAltars founder Day Schildkret. Click image to see more of his earth altars.

Start the new year with MorningAltars founder Day Schildkret & Life-Cycle Celebrant Holly Pruett for a day of beauty-making to honor the darkest season and the grief of these troubled times.

Date: Sun., Jan. 29, 2017, 10am-4pm. Tickets via Eventbrite.
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Upcoming PDX Death Cafes

10408964_632028156916619_6709640710392744152_nWe’re pleased to partner with a range of local hosts to offer Death Cafés at a variety of locations around town. There is no fee to attend (donations gratefully accepted) but registration is required for these upcoming Cafes:

Sun, March 5, 2-4pm PDX Death Café at First Unitarian Church

Sun, March 19, 2-4pm PDX Death Café at Pine St. Sangha

Read more about PDX Death Cafe.

On “The Japanese Art of Grieving a Miscarriage”

Jizo figure, Great Vow Zen Monastery, Clatskanie, OR; NPR photo by Deena Prichep

As one who knows the grief of a pregnancy aborted and attempt after unsuccessful attempt at conception, I wasn’t surprised to receive a NY Times piece on the topic from a half-dozen people. It’s no wonder The Japanese Art of Grieving a Miscarriage has hit a nerve: our dominant culture in the US has little willingness to see this face of grief.

In the Times essay, the American author describes the ceremonial vacuum she and her husband experienced when her 10-week-old pregnancy ended. “We knew miscarriage was common. But why wasn’t there anything people did when it happened? ‘If only there were some kind of tradition.…’” Read More