Rochester Event: Legacy of Love: Your Ethical Will

legacy of love


CANCELED: Caring for our Own: After Death Care Workshop

Thank you for your interest in the Taking Care of Our Own workshop.   We are canceling January 21 and will  reschedule it for later this year. Thank you for your understanding.

August link roundup

TEDx “Let’s Talk About Death”
For an honest 15-minute TEDx presentation, check out the 2015 “Let’s Talk About Death” by Rochelle Martin, a Canadian crisis-care RN and death midwife.
A recent New Republic in-depth story on family-directed after-death care represents “an unprecedented effort to truly listen to Elizabeth Knox and Merilynne Rush” (home funeral educators in Maryland and Michigan respectively) according to National Home Funeral President Lee Webster.
Who Owns the Dead?
“It was a Sunday in the autumn of 1995, and Rob Sanders was driving his three kids from his house in Baltimore to the house of his ex-wife, Elizabeth Knox, in Silver Spring, Maryland. The kids rotated who got to sit in the front seat, and today was seven-year-old Alison’s turn. The boys wanted to hear the Redskins game, and when Alison leaned forward to fiddle with the radio, Sanders told her to sit back—he would find it.
“When he looked up, the light had turned red, and he braked, belatedly. Skidding into the intersection at about 14 miles an hour, he hit another car, and the passenger-side airbag deployed. The airbag—one of those early models designed to protect a full-sized adult male in a much more violent crash—struck Alison “with the force of a heavyweight boxer,” as Knox would later put it, rendering the girl unconscious and braindead in an instant.”

A Busy Week for MTN!

This has been a busy week for the Minnesota Threshold Network!

Last Friday through Sunday was the national conference of the Funeral Consumer’s Alliance. The headline speaker was Caitlin Dougherty, pictured below, of “Ask a Mortician” You Tube fame. Her website Order of the Good Death has garnered lots of views and her whimsical yet down-to-earth presentations can be a gateway for people seeking information and alternatives to the commercialized funeral industry.

Caitlin Dougherty
Caitlin Dougherty

The FCA conference sponsored a field trip to Prairie Oaks Memorial Eco Gardens, a natural cemetery where we saw a grave from the previous week.

Prairie Oaks grave site
A natural burial site at Prairie Oaks Memorial Eco Garden

One exciting aspect of the conference was to experience the close bonds that are forming between the local chapter of FCA and MTN. We share a lot of the same goals, and it was inspiring to be around so many people committed to bringing choices to the American public. For more information about the local chapter, go to the new Minnesota FCA website

Beth Knox Presentation
Elizabeth Knox

On Tuesday, MTN held our annual public forum, featuring for the first time, a national leader. Elizabeth Knox, President of the National Home Funeral Alliance, spoke about the healing power of caring for our own at death, honoring the dead by disturbing their body as little as possible, and the ways that death care nourishes our spirit, our culture, and our Earth. Almost 90 people attended the presentation at Macalester Plymouth United Church in St. Paul.

Beth and MTN members
Linda Bergh, Elizabeth Knox (featured speaker), Anne Murphy, Rep. Carolyn Laine, Marianne Dietzel, Becky Bohan, Nancy Manahan, and Kathy Huset at MTN June 10 Forum

Thursday evening MTN member Anne Murphy of A Thousand Hands organized the showing of the award-winning documentary movie A Will for the Woods at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in St. Paul. Some of the 45 attendees stayed afterwards to participate in discussion groups about the film and natural burial.

Finally, this week MTN was contacted by members in Rochester and Bemidji who would like to form local Threshold Networks. Anyone who is interested in helping launch these outstate organizations is welcome. Just send an email to MTN or attend the MTN meeting in Rochester at the People’s Co-op on Monday, August 25 at 7:00 pm. For information contact Char Tarashanti at 507-289-0720.

Meanwhile, no meetings are planned in the Twin Cities for the summer. We will resume regular monthly meetings in September. A Will for the Woods will be shown at a fall meeting. Meeting dates and locations to follow.




June 10 Public Forum: National Speaker Elizabeth Knox

Tuesday, June 10, 2014, “Home After-Death Care & Green Burials: What Is It? Why Would You Want to do It?”

Annual public forum, featuring Elizabeth Knox, founder of Crossings: Caring for Our Own and president of the National Home Funeral Association. Elizabeth will share the story of her 7-year-old daughter’s home vigil, featured in the book Alison’s Gift.

Macalester Plymouth United Church, 1658 Lincoln Ave, Saint Paul, 7pm – 9 pm. Free and open to all.

Elizabeth Knox.png

Elizabeth Knox, NHFA President

Next Meeting TUESDAY May 13, 2014, Green Burial and Cremation

TUESDAY May 13, 2014, 7pm meeting at the home of Nancy Manahan and Becky Bohan, 21 E. Rustic Lodge Ave., Minneapolis. Information and stories about Green Burial & Cremation, including options for both in Minnesota.

Outdoor vigil



Next Meeting SUNDAY April 6, 2014 Children’s Deaths

March 15, 2014 by mnthreshold  | Edit

The next meeting is SUNDAY (not the usual Monday) April 6, 7pm, at the home of Anne Murphy, 2183 Wellesley Avenue, Saint Paul 55105.
Topic: Deaths of Young Children. Share and hear stories, including that of Elizabeth Knox’s daughter, told in the inspiring book Alison’s Gift (available at the meeting). See Nancy Jewel Poer’s new 25-minute video “Gifts of Home Funerals for Families and Community Threshold Work.”
 Twin girls, Brielle and Kyrie, were  born 12 weeks ahead of their due  date. Needing intensive care, they  were placed in separate incubators.  Kyrie began to gain weight and her  health stabilized. But Brielle, born  only 2 lbs, had trouble breathing,  heart problems and other  complications. She was not expected  to live.  Their nurse did everything she  could to make Brielle’s health  better, but nothing she did was  helping her. With nothing else to do,  their nurse went against hospital  policy and decided to place both  babies in the same incubator.  She left the twin girls to sleep and  when when she returned she found  a sight she could not believe. She  called all the nurses and doctors  and this is what they saw.  As Brielle got closer to her sister,  Kyrie put her small little arm around  her, as if to hug and support her  sister. From that moment on,  Brielle’s breathing and heart rate  stabilized and her health became  normal.  Share the pic to show the world how  a little bit of tender love and  affection can save someone's Life.  ~ DeAnna Lee
(These preemie twin girls survived — a Facebook posting on the healing power of touch.)
Save the date for the May meeting: TUESDAY May 13: Green Burial & Cremation.