In the event of a Muslim’s death in the San Francisco Bay Area, please contact Imam Siraj Desai at 510-943-9600. Imam Siraj is affiliated with the Islamic Society of East Bay (ISEB), which provides funeral services and arrangements.

The MCC East Bay does not have its own mortuary services. We provide only advice to families needing direction for burial and financial assistance for the funeral and burial of indigent Muslims in the Bay Area. The Burial Assistance application is here. Questions? Aminah Abdullah at 925-264-9297 or burial@mcceastbay.org.

When MCC covers the funeral/burial cost, we work closely with the (ISEB), which has a body storage facility and a team of male and female volunteers to perform the washing (ghusl) and we also arrange burial at the Five Pillars Farm Cemetery in Livermore, CA. The ISEB and Five Pillars Farms are separate entities from the MCC.

INSTRUCTIONS: FOR FUNERAL AT ISEB & BURIAL AT FIVE PILLARS CEMETERY

The ISEB has contracted with Khan Funeral Home to provide the following:

  1. Arrange for removal of the deceased
  2. Transport the deceased to the Mosque
  3. Obtain required legal documents to allow for the burial of the deceased
  4. Transport the deceased to the final resting place
  5. Provide death certificate
  6. For unnatural death, work with the local coroner’s office
  7. Embalm in unusual case

In order to start the funeral process after death occurs (including authorization to Khan Funeral Home to transport the body from the place of death to ISEB), please download the Khan Funeral Home app to your Smartphone complete:

For any questions or details about the funeral process, please visit this page or contact these individuals at ISEB:
  1. Imam Siraj Desai at (510) 943 9600
  2. Br. Abdur Rehman at (510) 366 5205
  3. Sr. Rehana Markar at (510) 683 9701

Here are other individuals:

  1. Zaki Khan (Five Pillars Farm) at (510) 517-8397
  2. Abdel Elkadi (Muslim Community Association (MCA) at (408) 794-9440

The cost for an adult burial in the Bay Area is about $7,500:

  1. Hearse transport within the Bay Area (based on mileage to retrieve the body) to bring body to ISEB and later to Five Pillars Cemetery, a burial permit and a death certificate: $1,800 – $2,500 (Khan Funeral Home)
  2. Body storage in a cold room, washing and shrouding the body, and performing the Islamic last rites (Salat al-Janazah): $500.00 (Islamic Society of East Bay)
  3. Adult plot purchase and opening/closing grave plot: $4,900 (Five Pillars Cemetery)

Resources: A Guide for the Muslim Funeral

Frequently Asked Questions

From the Islamic Society of East Bay

  1. Can a woman see a man’s body after the ghussul?
    Yes, only mahram women can see the man’s deceased body. An example of mahram is wife, daughter, sister, mother, and nieces.

  2. Is there a maximum or minimum number of sisters who can perform the ghussul?

    No, there is no such thing as maximum or minimum requirements, but ISEB management has rules to have only five family members and four experienced women from ISEB, in which, one would be a new trainee. The reason they have four participants from ISEB is because the body is kept in the freezer and the body may be heavy and they need to lift the body up if they are not using the machine. Most of the family members that come are in grief and mourning and cannot always lift the body. They normally can do the ghussul, but emotionally lifting may be too difficult. Also, the room is too small according to the radius.

  3. How do you get release of the body to transport it in a family car?
    ISEB has no knowledge or information in regards to transporting family members in a family car.
  4. Why do we have to throw away all the clothes? Why can we not take it as a memory?
    California law does not allow you to take clothes home. All clothes worn must be disposed of in a hazardous waste bag.

  5. Does a body need to be picked up by only mahram men from the freezer?

    No, before the ghussul any man can pick up the body from the freezer and put it on the table.

  6. Why do we bury women deeper in the grave than men?

    This is not true. Men and women are buried at the same depth.

  7. If there is no mahram who will put the body in the grave?

    This will be most pious person or other family members.

  8. Is the Ghussul only done through organizations or can we do it at home?

    ISEB has no input on regards to ghussul’s being done at home. However, Ghussul’s can be done at home if proper arrangements are made. They should contact the state and city requirements to find out more information.

  9. Does the family provide the kafan or pay the masjid for it?

    ISEB provides the kafan and all necessary items for the ghussul.

  10. Can a woman on her period perform the ghussul of her dead relative?

    No.

  11. What is the width of the lifafa?

    150cm/180cm to cover from head to toe. This is the measurement used in Taleem-al-Haqq, but I use 120 cm width.

  12. Where is the cemetery?

    There is a Muslim cemetery in Livermore – at 1761 Laughlin Road. It is called the Five Pillars cemetery. There are is also a cemetery in Hayward called The Chapel of Chimes with a Muslim area. These are the primary two that are used in the East Bay.

  13. We heard that no scissors should be used for the kaffan?

    Sewed material cannot be used, but we have to cut the kaffan so we have to use scissor.

  14. What is the Dua when closing the eyes of deceased?

  15. Will the deceased feel cold water if warm is not available (i.e. washing in secular mortuaries)?
    In Faatawa Shaamiyah, it is stated that when bathing the Deceased, water should not be too hot as the mayyit also feels pain and is harmed just as the living. As with regard to hearing, many Ahaadith conform this, but it should be understood that Allah grants permission for the deceased to hear what Allah wishes, i.e. a person cannot hear of his own free will.

     

     

  16. I heard family should stay a little bit after the burial is done. Is this true and why?

    It is advisable to remain behind after having burying the deceased in the grave to occupy one’s self in making zikr and supplicating for the deceased. It is permissible to supplicate by the grave while either standing or sitting.

    It is reported by Uthman (ra): When Nabi (saw) would finish burying the deceased, he would stand by it and he would say ” seek forgiveness for your brother, and ask for him firmness, for he is being questioned now.” [Sunan Abī Dāwūd, (al-Janā`iz), 2: 103

     

  17. Can a woman on her period do Ghusul of her dead relative?

    It is disliked (makruh) for a menstruating woman to give ghusl to a deceased person. It is advisable for a menstruating woman not to be present by the dying person.