The Ann Arbor Green Burial Network in action!

nature deathAs I write, the wind is howling and the sun is shining on this beautiful winter day. I have been busy consulting with folks from all over the state, and elsewhere, about one of my favorite topics: How to have a funeral and burial that is in line with our values to protect, preserve, and strengthen the earth. Everything from mushroom burial suits that mediate toxins to backyard family cemeteries to creation of new township burial grounds to collaboration with existing cemeteries to start offering natural burial. I’ll be attending the International Cemetery, Cremation and Funeral Association Annual Conference in New Orleans in April to assist the Green Burial Council in spreading the word among those “in the industry.” I continue to do presentations whenever I am asked. So many of us want to change the paradigm and it takes the support of all of you to do that, slowly but surely.

I had the privilege of helping a family that found out about green burial at the Ann Arbor Green Fair last June. Sadly, after chatting with us and taking home some literature, a family member became ill. Through facing his death, educating himself, and making his wishes known, he was able to have a home funeral and green burial that gave everyone peace of mind and comfort. This is the work we do.

Thank you to all of you who have signed our petition. Melissa Anne Rogers and I met recently; here are our plans for this year:

  1. Encourage and help the Ann Arbor City Council to sponsor a resolution saying that they support green burial and that we need more green burial options locally. (Last year we met with county officials and they stated that there are NO public health concerns with green burial that would stop any cemetery from offering it in our county.
  2. Produce an educational article, video, CTN television show and radio show about green burial, highlighting local families that have had one.
  3. Host an Earth Day event (April 22). Currently, I’m thinking about a fundraiser concert!
  4. Have a table at the Green Fair again, which is on June 10 in the evening.
Obviously, we need a good amount of help to bring these goals to fruition. Please email me if you are willing to help us by being a planner and doer. We especially need help with social media and connections.
I hope to hear from you!
Merilynne Rush


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