Sterling White Funeral Home opens new Jewish Garden, Gan Ahavah

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Jewish cemetery plots in Houston can be a challenge to acquire if you are not a member of a large congregation.

Longtime Houston Jewish funeral director Emily Caulfield hopes to help fill that void with Sterling White Funeral Home and Cemetery’s new Jewish Garden, Gan Ahavah.

Just a short 30-minute drive from
downtown Houston, Sterling White Funeral Home is a beautiful setting in The Highlands, uninterrupted by traffic and highways.

“There is definitely a need, and I think this is a wonderful solution,” said Caulfield, who has been a licensed funeral director for 12 years.

“Some congregations have turned to member-only availability because space is limited. All of the affiliated Jews in smaller congregations and unaffiliated Jews don’t have a place to go,” she said.

“The beauty of Sterling White is we kind of have unlimited space out here.”

Caulfield said the Jewish Garden is in a new open space with a nice tree in the center. There will be two pillars at the entrance, one with a book with the name, “Gan Ahavah,” and the other with a bowl full of rocks for people to place on their loved one’s graves.

The cemetery space will be able to accommodate interfaith families, as well, and is planning a Yizkor service in fall 2023.

Sterling White also will offer Jewish funeral services, unveiling ceremonies and custom memorials.

“We will work with all the synagogues and are happy to offer a really affordable option for funerals,” Caulfield said.

Isabelle Dion, Sterling White’s managing partner, believes the funeral home’s northeast Houston location is a hidden gem.

“Most people don’t know the beauty of this area,” Dion said. “We aren’t a cemetery next to a busy highway. It is far enough from the city to be peaceful where families can take a moment and truly pause and commemorate their loved one.”

Dion said Sterling White also is a perpetual-care cemetery, with a fund to maintain the beauty of the park forever.

“We invite people to come have a tour and they will not be disappointed in the peace of the park and the affordable options,” she said.

Caulfield also encourages families to take the time now to prepare for their loved ones. “Preplanning is one of the best gifts you can give your kids so they don’t have to make any choices or come up with the money while they are grieving,” Caufield said. “Especially with Jewish burials, there is not a lot of time to make all these choices.

“We believe Sterling White can be a great solution for our Jewish community,” said Caulfield. “At Gan Ahavah, every Jew is welcome.”

For more information, call 281-426-3555 or go to sterlingwhite.com.


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