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Below is the link to the Vimeo of the Ceremony. Copy and past the URL into the URL address space on your browser. Feel free to pass the URL onto people who are interested.
Larry and I want to thank you so very much for making it possible for us to be with all of you at the ceremony you created and stewarded yesterday. From the initial music, from Kathy’s reference to stars’s functions, I felt as if we were all on a voyage learning about your beautiful and remarkable son from those who love and knew Jared so very well. The absolute beauty of the day and the gardens we viewed, the graciousness and skill of both Kathy and Kathleen, the honesty and candor of the each of his friends and relatives, all enlarged my wonder at the depth and breadth of Jared’s personality and his way of living so fully and giving so generously to others. It was a gift to be with you and both Larry and I found ourselves totally focused, listening with appreciation to each speaker, as the myriad of stories poured out and held us both in rapt silence.
I feel so fortunate now to know him better-to have seen and listened to the people whom he loved and cared for, to see how clearly he learned from you, from your innate modeling of how to deeply listen to another and make them know that they are dearly cared for and valued by you. Through this ceremony I met his remarkable sense of humor, his love of music, his delight in comic books and children, his proclivity for spontaneous travel and adventure, his need to have some control of the world which was animated in both play and mischief, his evolution as a confidant and friend and the way he continued to embrace a youthful naiveté.
I am so grateful to you both for helping me reframe how I was experiencing Jared’s leaving. For I am again reminded that we are all part of one another, we are each shared stardust and our lives do not end with death - Jared’s life continues in the love and friendships he shared, in the seeds of love and relationship that were sown all during his life in so many people, myself included, who had the opportunity to explore their lives and learn from him and who experienced his compassion, his humility, his kindness as an NVC practitioner, in the guidebook he and Kathleen created, a vehicle to help us make our way in this complicated nuanced world we share -in his laughter that so expressed his abundant energy, in the mischievous way his humor illuminated both awareness of the complexity of life and a youthful zeal for mocking the serious, and so importantly, in how you and Robert and your family and your friends and Lewis all modeled the beauty of living with love -all these continue in him and in you.
I hope this beautiful ceremony has bought you some comfort as it has for us. Larry and I have been deeply touched and changed by the ceremony we experienced yesterday. Thank you for this extraordinary memorial- we are so grateful to have been with you to experience this outpouring of love.
Once again, we are sending you our love,
Larry and Paula
What a gift to have attended the memorial for Jared Finkelstein (may his name be a blessing). It felt like a starburst of his energy came to all of us there, as his family and friends and colleagues shared somethings of who he was in this world. I knew the dozen Engel family that were there, but everyone I talked to was incredibly tender and attentive, kind, interested, thoughtful and connected.– starting with another woman in line for the bathroom who had come up from LA with her young son and took Jared’s training a few years ago – and the Japanese woman who’d come in from Hawaii who was a fellow NVC trainer – and two women in his cancer support group that met in Walnut Creek. Not to mention people who were kind just sharing flowers and pictures, cakes, the tenderness of the torn fabric on a neighbor’s wrist, and standing silently to put our stones in the baskets at the front in Jared’s memory and honor.
I’d only known Jared from Harriet and Lew’s wedding, where I saw him extend an embrace to all of us who were there, and bring us all together in loving appreciation. Now I found out that he was a committed NVC communicator, was immersed in that community and practice, running cancer support groups, nonviolent practice groups, teaching in lowest income communities. That he’d just co-authored a lovely book on Choice: A field guide for navigating the polarization of our world – with Kathleen Macferran (I grabbed a copy). He was described as always attentive, paying full attention to you, making up amazing games – with cousins who played hide and seek in rooms filled with blankets in the dark; yikes disassembling a car that ended up in the dining room during Earlham graduation. Thoughtful and afraid, meticulous, worried, committed, tender and attentive, kind, interested, and connected. A deep and complicated person.
with love from Merry
To the community that was Jared's circle of family and friends,
I feel heart ache in writing the salutation because it means I am not writing, including Jared. Tears. Rachelle Lamb wrote in her prose On This Day, "May you fall in love with heartbreak and seeing how it's stitched into everything." Today I am heartbroken without Jared as a colleague and I do not want heartbreak to be stitched into everything.
I walked through TCCP at the same time Jared did and we met in the final step of the process of certification, the community circle, together. I looked forward to TCCP weekends because of the breadth of learning and fun that were part of each one. Jared brought a huge dose of fun and play to those weekends.
I didn't identify myself often as a pastor in TCCP, as I was learning NVC to enrich my life, and when I did identify my role within my faith tradition, few people asked more. But Jared jumped in to several discussions with me. He heard that I valued choosing the parts of my tradition that were central for me, and the freedom to let go of parts that were peripheral. I remember him saying he felt something like relief when I said I disavowed the doctrine of original sin. I sensed he was unafraid and undaunted to take on any subject, even the intersection of the sacredness of life and how faith traditions capture, distort, or contribute to it. When one of our colleagues, a man starting schools for girls on the African continent, explained how menstruation sometimes interrupted girls' education, Jared gave a beautiful appreciation for our friend's command and comfort talking about menstruation. These discussions were precious to me.
I do not have a good memory for jokes, but Jared told me an Adam and Eve joke that I remember verbatim. Yet another precious gift. Ask me sometime and I will share it.
In lieu of flowers
Hi, I am Larissa, the oldest on my late mom’s side.
I would like to say a few things about Jared.
Jared, Jodi (Noa), Jeremy and I were within five years of each other and when younger you would find us in Poughkeepsie NY, Ridgefield CT, Teaneck NJ or even Nantucket for vacations in the summers.
I remember times eating ice cream with our grandparents at Bischoff’s and asking if we can select one candy to bring home for later. Or just hanging out being kids.
One time we were in Nantucket, after uncle Robert and my father took us to the fish market to pick up some fresh seafood.
After getting back to our cottage and everything was in the refrigerator the four of us noticed among the smaller clams, a gigantic clam. I believe Jared was the catalyst to put a note on it. “PLEASE DON’T EAT ME”. When our parents saw this laughter ensued. (I do not remember if the clam was eaten but we gave it a goodbye if so).
This was the type of person Jared was. He had a great smile and laughed a lot.
Visits between our families were wonderfully fun although I wish there were more of them as we all scattered across the country to figure out our lives.
Regrettably, as time went by, I did not see Jeremy or Jared but infrequently. I had moved to Seattle and by the time I decided to move back to the East Coast, Jeremy and Jared were already in California.
Jared was my youngest cousin and I feel very numb and empty that I will not ever see him again.