Befriending Mortality 6-Week Series

“Befriending Mortality” 6-Week Series

What does Befriending Mortality mean to you? Join me to reflect on many facets of this time-honored question.

SPRING UPDATE: I’m taking a summer hiatus from teaching. Contact me if interested in future offerings or in hosting one or all of these topics in your community.

After getting an incredible reception for the pilot of this six-session series last fall, I’m offering a new round, this time with bonus sessions. Attend the whole series or only the session(s) of your choice.

WHAT: A series of six on-line classes held twice a month February–April 2024. Sessions are 75 minutes long, each centered on a specific topic, and include presentations, poetry, questions for reflection, and detailed follow-up materials. Recordings of sessions are available to registrants. See topics below.

“Honestly, this was one of the best workshop series I’ve ever been involved with. It was a perfect blend of facts and feelings. The beauty of the poems, songs, and films was essential for me. Holly is thorough and compassionate. It was a safe space for a subject that calls out for one.”

WHEN/ WHERE: 2nd & 4th Tuesdays, February–April at 5–6:15pm pacific via Zoom

  • Befriending Mortality – February 13, 2024
  • Final Disposition – February 27, 2024
  • Remembering Together – March 12, 2024
  • The Dying Time – March 26, 2024
  • From Death to Disposition – April 9, 2024
  • Making a Death Plan – April 23, 2024
  • + Befriending Mortality Death Cafés Feb. 20, March 19, April 30

Scroll down for topic descriptions.

HOW MUCH: Sliding scale $25 – $45/ class; $120 – $270 for the series


  • DEATH CAFE: Each month during the series, a no-cost conversation for Befriending Mortality participants to give voice to whatever is on your mind regarding death, dying, and grief, in the company of others.
  • 1-1 CONSULT: Those registering for the full series also have the option of a complimentary one-hour session with Holly by phone or Zoom on the topic of your choice, to be completed by June, 2024.

Registration is closed; contact me for info on future classes.

Read More

TEDxPortland’s Salon on Mortality

“Courage emerges from Love.” ~ Priscilla Bernard Wieden 

Last week Amber and I entered a temple of creativity made holy on that night by courage, love, and honest talk about mortality.

Five hundred souls came together in Wieden+Kennedy’s auditorium for a TEDxPortland Salon, their first-ever organized around a theme. Jumping into the deep end, the theme was Mortality.

Host David Rae expertly cradled the evening with introductions that were concise, precise, and full of heart. The night was possible, he said, because Priscilla Bernard Wieden had said Yes, let’s do this. She would speak publicly for the first time about the death of her husband Dan Wieden 16 months earlier.

Read More

From Death to Disposition: April 9 Zoom Class

From Death to Disposition

Historically, care for the dead was handled by family and community – and legally, it is still our right to do so. But for many, our ancestral ways of caring for each other after death have been forgotten.

Join me April 9th for the fifth of my current Befriending Mortality series. We’ll review the aspects of deathcare now outsourced to professionals – bathing, dressing, and transporting the body; sourcing a casket, shroud or urn; handling the paperwork – and consider the benefits of more hands-on engagement. You are welcome to participate even if you haven’t attended the first four sessions in the series.

BONUS SESSION! DEATH CAFE: Befriending Mortality participants are also welcome to attend a no-cost, on-line Death Café to share with each other what’s on their minds regarding befriending mortality.

WHAT: From Death to Disposition

WHEN: Tuesday April 9, 2024 from 5pm to 6:15pm pacific

WHERE: Via Zoom

HOW MUCH: Sliding scale $20 – $45/ class

CONTACT ME to register.

LEARN MORE: About the full Befriending Mortality Series with options for individuals and groups.

The Dying Time: March 26 Zoom Class

The Landscape from Diagnosis to Death

My friend Marcy Westerling didn’t hide the fact of her cancer or of her impending death. Read more about her insistence that we join her in looking her illness and her death squarely in the eye.

How do we support the dying in our midst? What supports might we want for our dying time?

Join me March 26th for the fourth of my current Befriending Mortality series. We’ll look at the landscape from diagnosis to death: palliative care and hospice, medical aid in dying (MAID) and voluntary stopping eating and drinking (VSED), assembling a care team and the role of an end-of-life doula, and the deaths that don’t go “according to plan.”

You are welcome to participate even if you haven’t attended the first three sessions in the series. You’ll also have access to a no-cost, Death Café-style conversation for class participants to share with each other what’s up regarding befriending mortality. Dates and Zoom link will be shared with those registered for Befriending Mortality classes.

WHAT: The Dying Time

WHEN: Tuesday March 26th, 2023 at 5pm pacific

WHERE: Via Zoom

HOW MUCH: Sliding scale $25 – $45/ class

LEARN MORE: About the full Befriending Mortality Series with options for individuals and groups.

Pre-registration for each class is required via Eventbrite:

Remembering Together: March 12 Zoom Class

Ceremonies of Bereavement & Remembrance

Ten years after my father’s death I wrote the eulogy he’d never had.

How do we honor, and strengthen, the continuity of relationships across the veil of life and death?

Join me March 12th for the third session in my current Befriending Mortality series. We’ll explore inspiring examples of creative ceremonies of bereavement and remembrance, including:

BONUS MONTHLY DEATH CAFE: I host an optional, no-cost, open-format conversation for class registrants to share with each other what’s up regarding befriending mortality. Dates and access to zoom link will be shared during class sessions.

Read More