Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Facing Death with Life: A Program for Adults


Activity time: 5 minutes

Explain that the closing words come from a children’s book about an interfaith family, Kaddish for Grampa in Jesus’ Name Amen, by James Howe and Catherine Stock (Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2004). Share these words:

And then one night, after the people had stopped coming and the candle was no longer burning, Daddy was putting me to bed when his fingers felt something under my pillow.

“What’s this?” he asked.

I pulled it out to show him. It was the case for Grampa’s glasses. “Grandma gave it to me,” I told him. “She said I was always the best one at helping Grampa find his glasses. I touch it every night before I go to sleep.”

“To remember Grampa,” Daddy said in a soft voice.

I nodded, and Daddy kissed me on the forehead.

After Daddy left the room, I touched Grampa’s glasses case to my heart. I closed my eyes and pictured his wrinkled face. I could almost hear him singing to me.

“Good night, Grampa,” I said.

And then I slid the glasses case under my pillow and kept my hand on it while I fell asleep.

It wasn’t the Christian way and it wasn’t the Jewish way. It was just my way. It was my Kaddish for Grampa in Jesus’ name amen.

Extinguish the chalice.