Sunday, 4 November 2012

Death Cafe in Ann Arbor, Michigan with Merilynne Rush

Merilynne Rush
November 17th 2012
10 am to noon

Eastern Accents
214 S. Fourth Avenue
Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA

There will be no fee and there is cake!

Gather with us for a relaxed and frank discussion about living and dying.  Many people recognize that we live in a death denying culture and that we can live more fully if we embrace the fact that death happens.  There's no agenda, other than to listen and share with each other.  Eastern Accents provides an array of tasty asian treats, snacks, coffee and tea.  Please join us.  RSVP encouraged but not necessary.  Questions - contact Merilynne Rush,

Merilynne Rush is a midwife, community activist and educator about natural death care options.  She is the author of Home Funeral Guides:  Illuminating the Path, a serialized subscription eBook.  Having attended home births since 1980 and worked as a hospice nurse, Merilynne now dedicates her time to volunteering, visiting her grandchildren, and empowering families to care for their own dead.


  1. Please let me know if you are planning to attend. Thanks! -Merilynne

  2. So far, six people have RSVP'ed that they are coming tomorrow. I'm looking forward to it!
    See you there!

  3. Wow. Our first ever Michigan Death Cafe was great. Eight people came, despite the fact that it was a football Saturday in downtown Ann Arbor! We went around the room and there was much head nodding and acknowledgement as everyone shared a story. That led to a nicely-paced discussion which ended up focusing on natural death - we all agreed that there are times when allowing natural death to occur is desired but oh, so hard to achieve in our modern world. Interesting.

    Hope you'll join us for our next one on December 8, 214 S. Fourth Ave, Ann Arbor, MI. RSVP required here or to

  4. Here's some resources that were mentioned:

    Annie Freeman's Fabulous Traveling Funeral, by Kris Radish

    The Pagan Book of Living and Dying, Practical Rituals, Prayers, Blessings, and Meditations on Crossing Over, by Starhawk, M. Macha NightMare

    Ira Byock, MD, has written extensively on palliative care and end of life. Somewhere in his writings he lists the five things to be sure to say when someone is dying:
    1. Forgive me 2. I forgive you 3. Thank you 4. I love you 5. Good-bye

    A Safe Journey Home, A Simple Guide to Achieving a Peaceful Death, by Felicity Warner
    Nana Upstairs and Nana Downstairs, by Tomie DePaola

    The 10th Good Thing About Barney, by Judith Viorst

  5. So great to see your success here, Merilynne! We are preparing for our first Death Cafe in Tucson on December 4th. I'd love to talk to you about this sometime in the near future. It was so good to see you and work with you at the NHFA conference!

  6. More feedback from a participant on Nov. 17:
    Overall, it seemed like a very worthwhile sort of gathering.
    I think it increased my likelihood of being able to focus on the sacred trust involved in attending a beloved's (or anyone's) transition.
    I felt totally comfortable -- partially because I'm fairly comfortable about such things on my own, but also because you and the other women there made it a very comfortable topic.
    3 words that best describe my death cafe experience:
    freeing, inspiring, comfortable

    I would heartily recommend death cafe to anyone expressing any sort of interest or openness.


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