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Imagine…

  • Facing death with far fewer fears
  • A funeral ceremony being held in a home or a private, intimate setting; allowing for a longer and more personal good-bye
  • Bodies being respectfully cared for by family and friends, not by strangers
  • Family and friends decorating or building a casket or urn as a healing act of closure
  • Environmentally conscious final disposition
  • Children learning that death is a natural part of the lifecycle by participating in a home funeral
  • Knowing more affordable options compared to conventional methods

Started in 1995, Final Passages was the nation’s first non-profit, educational institute and resource center dedicated to conscious dying, and a holistic, green, compassionate and dignified alternative to conventional funeral and after-death practices. We are also the first nationwide organization to create a death midwifery and home funeral guidance training program.

Celebrating more than 25 Years in Death Doula/Midwifery and Home Funeral Guidance!

Our work serves the needs of community members who come from a variety of cultural, economic, and religious perspectives. Final Passages is an active participant in the National Home Funeral Alliance.

Upcoming Trainings


Honoring Life’s Final Passage, Level 2 Training

Death Doula/Midwifery, Green Burial, Home Funeral Guidance

ONLINE Friday-Sunday, August 12-14, 2022


Annual Level 3 Training – Becoming a Death Midwife/Doula,

Home Funeral Guide and Educator

Sat & Sun, Oct 8-9 and November 12-13, 2022


EOL Series banner

New Free Community Education Series

Embracing the End of Life:

A Monthly Online Series on Dying, Death & Grief

3rd Thursday of each month from 4-6 pm PST

Sacred Bedside Care

Supporting Those in Transition While Caring for Ourselves

Thursday, August 18, 4-6PM PDT, 7-9 pm EDT

* When you get the call: Grounding and Inner Tracking

* Tending the dying and their care team: Presence and creativity

* After death: Being a touchstone for grief

Michelle Vesser serves as an End of Life Doula, Home Funeral Guide, Tibetan End of Life Practitioner, & Grief Support Counselor. Her deep connection with the natural and spiritual world has been inspired by 35 years as a farmer/gardener. Her experience with death’s sacred transition helps transform the experience of dying and loss into an honoring of one’s life. Learn more at: Everything Sacred ~ Tending Your Inner and Outer Landscape where you will see all of Michelle’s passions brought into the world: End of life care, garden coaching, herbal studies, elemental medicine, spiritual counseling, and wedding officiating.

Michelle began her training with Final Passages in 2014 and has been on Final Passages Core Council since 2017. In 2019 she trained with Inspired Endings End of Life Doula program. In addition, she has studied Tibetan Bon/Buddhist practice since 2005. She has received teachings in Phowa (Transference of Consciousness), Zhitro (Purification Mandala), and other elemental death practices.

Michelle also has 20 years of experience as a spiritual counselor and reverend. She offers unique emotional and spiritual tools, which support individuals and families through the process of death and dying. 

Offerings: Advance directives, emotional, practical, and physical support before during and after death, home funeral guidance, 7 week after death practice, and grief support

“Thank you for all of your love & support, Michelle! You are restoring our family’s ability to be with mom in a healthy / respectful way. Invaluable really.” HH


Let’s Talk About Death: Film & Discussion Evening

Postponed until we can meet in person again.


“Final Passages’ course work is life-changing. The education is transforming my perspectives on death and the healing that can occur at the end of life. I look forward to sharing, connecting and assisting with my family, friends and community about home funerals.”

— Victoria Joy

Final Passages’ trainings go far far beyond home funerals. I step into more of who truly am every time I come. There’s nowhere and nothing in the world like them. They’re consistently the most transformative trainings and workshops I’ve ever attended.

— Andrea, Santa Cruz

In reflection of the my path with your direction in May 2019, I must let you know how much that experience meant to me and continues to mean to me.

The opportunity to say good bye to my Beloved husband Tom by having his presence close to me for three days as his spirit left his body, continues to be such a healing for me.

Thank-you, so much for nurturing the peace and deep-hearted presence of love which still lives within me today.

I would love to be a part of your dedicated work; if and when there is a path for me to do so.

Please know, how thankful I am for your inspirational work.

Peace, Love and deep Gratitude,

Mathilda Cassidy, Home Funeral Guidance Client

We weren’t ready for how the veil was parted in our lives, but we appreciate all we learned at your course a few years ago. We relied heavily on what we’d just learned to a) share new options (and our wishes) with our adult children, b) advise them to let either us or someone they trusted know their wishes, and c) share with others, encouraging similar things.
 
We had no idea that in just a very short while, we would host a tender wake at home for our 24-year old daughter, Anlya Grace.
 
Her tragic death in August 2018 shocked us all – family, childhood friends, and extended community in several cities. Mourners repeated over and over how much it meant to be able to bring their art/poem/quote/peace to enfold and honor Anlya.
 
Many didn’t know such a thing as her community-decorated cremation casket and home-directed funeral was possible. All were agreed: Anlya’s at-home, earth friendly wake was exactly how she would have wanted her community to gather. An artist, poet, and equal rights activist, she was known for sheltering and feeding temporarily homeless friends, celebrating our beautiful planet, laughing heartily, dancing and galvanizing others to reach beyond indolence, cruelty, and discrimination.
 
I can hear her in my mind, anxiously watching while her country chooses its path, ferociously urging while she paces.
 
Thank you, Jerrigrace, for your instruction, hands-on demonstrations, and resource materials provided at the workshop.

Tami Monkman, Level 1 and 2 student

#end-of-life-doula #endoflifedoula #deathmidwife #naturaldeathcare  #greenburial  #consciousdying  #homefunerals  #familydirectedfuneral #finalpassages #jerrigracelyons