The Art of Death Midwifery

2018 Schedule

Los Angeles, CA


THE ART of DEATH MIDWIFERY is a comprehensive certificate training for professional and non-professional end-of-life caregivers and those seeking to prepare for a conscious, peaceful transition.  

 Death Midwifery combines the roles of death doula, spiritual counsellor, end-of-life caregiver, home funeral guide, funeral planner and celebrant. The death midwife offers information, guidance and support to both the death journeyer and their family from terminal diagnosis through final disposition.


The Art of Death Midwifery is a 3- Level, 75-hour certificate program consisting of three weekend workshops, on-line group sessions and reading, written and practical assignments.  Our program is offered twice yearly in Los Angeles. Accommodation is not included. Please see below for the class details

Class size is limited to 20 students to maintain the intimacy of each group and early reservations are recommended as classes fill quickly. 

If you would like to bring this teaching to your community, please write to:

Cost for the 75-hour training is $1800.  Price is $1700 if paid in full in advance.

Thank you!  We look forward to sharing this sacred journey with you.





“This training far surpassed my expectations – it is deeply spiritual, while honoring all belief systems and the material is masterfully organized and presented.  I feel prepared and peaceful about my own death now and ready to help guide others.  Incredible value!”      – Sherida Kasteler – 







Level One     


A Spiritual Practice


Level 1 Details


A Journey into Dying

What if, rather than recoil from death we could lean into it, receive it, allow it to uphold and inform us? What if our our ability to feel joy actually depends upon this practice?

Enter The Grave is an intensive, interactive workshop that delves into the essence of what it means to die. Students learn tools to liberate them from the fear of dying; deeply trust and relax into the process; ease pain and suffering.  When one has entered their own grave and experienced their essential nature, they are able to provide spiritual guidance to loved ones.

Somatic movement, meditations, family constellations, written and group exercises gently guide the process in an intimate, safe and nurturing environment.

Topics explored

Giving Birth – Receiving Death

Connecting to source through somatic movement

Befriending fear

Energy fields and the luminous body

Healing the ancestral wound

Managing the physiological response to fear and pain

The Soul

Buddhist perspectives on death and dying

The life review

The death rehearsal


REGISTRATION for September 7, 8 & 9 2018 IS NOW CLOSED

Students are welcome to take Conscious Dying and After Death Care in 2018. 

Enter the Grave will be offered again in April 2019

Pay in Full HERE for all three levels of the 75-hour certificate program to receive $100 discount

Space is limited to 20 participants, early rsvp suggested.

Workshop takes place in a private home in West Los Angeles.  Please contact Olivia for details and for payment arrangements

September 7, 8 & 9  we are so sorry, this class is now full and registration is closed. Please check back for our 2019 schedule.


Friday, 3 PM – 9:30 PM.    Saturday 9 AM – 6PM.     Sunday 10AM – 5PM


“This workshop was amazing, beyond, beyond my expectations. I was not expecting to have so much personal healing. I feel I have a completely different understanding of death now”   – MG 

 Level Two


Preparing for a peaceful transition

There is no pre-requisite for this class 

Level 2 Details


Preparing for a Peaceful Transition


Studies show that 75% of people want to die at home, yet sadly, 75% of us will die in hospital or an institutional setting.

This workshop provides the information and tools necessary for creating a good death and ensuring your end-of-life wishes are fulfilled. Advance Directives are completed, signed and witnessed in the class and students create their ‘Death File’.

Students learn the roles and responsibilities of the death doula – one who offeres practical, emotional and spiritual support to the death journeyer and their family throughout the dying process.

Films, discussion and group exercises support the information shared in an intimate, nurturing environment. Please see below for curriculum details:

Topics explored

Understanding your options for end-of-life care in the US

Completing Advance Directives & POLST

Pain vs. Suffering

The physical process of dying

Spiritual perspectives on the dying process

Physician Aid in Dying – before you decide

Creating the Legacy Project

Ceasing nutrition & hydration

Religious beliefs and practices at the moment of death

Organ donation

Healing relationships/ Saying goodbye /letting go

Sitting vigil with the dying

The Living Funeral

Green Burial / Alternative Cremations


Please click on the link above to reserve your place for this individual workshop


Pay in Full HERE for the 3-Level, 75-hour certificate training to receive $100 discount.

Please check details in the drop-down menu for each level. Please check back for details or write to

Space is limited to 20 participants, early rsvp suggested. Workshop takes place in a private home in West Los Angeles, details provided to registered participants.

Please contact Olivia for details and for payment arrangements

October 19, 20 & 21

Friday, 3 PM – 9:30 PM.  Saturday 9 AM – 6PM.   Sunday 10AM – 6PM


This workshop is an amazing practice in honesty, self-inquiry,  love and service. The honoring of death as part of life and a portal to the next realm is examined through discussions, films, meditations, practical and legal information and group process. I wish I had known about this when my husband died, I would have done things very differently.”    – Suzanne Stratchen –

Level Three


The 3-day Vigil, Home Funerals & Green Burials

Prerequisite: Level 2 –  ‘Conscious Dying’

Level 3 Details


The Vigil, Home Funerals & Green Burials

(pre-requisite Level II Conscious Dying)


Sacred Crossings upholds that the dying process doesn’t end with the last breath but extends for a period of up to three days.  During this time, the soul, spirit or what is often referred to as the ‘luminous body’ separates from the physical and transitions to the next phase of it’s journey.

This workshop focuses on the role of the death midwife and home funeral guide at the time of death and for the days following until burial or cremation.

Students learn how to care for the body after death, both in the hospital and home setting, and support a family during the 1 to 3-day vigil.  Instruction includes care after sudden death – rituals in the ICU; bringing baby home after stillbirth and cremation and burial practices.

Films, demonstrations and practical application support the information shared.

For a complete list of curriculum topics, please see below:



Topics explored

Unexpected death – Holding space in the ER

 Legal rights concerning: Coroner /Funeral home / Cemetery / Crematory

Being a healing presence – sitting vigil at the death bed

Stillbirth/ Infant death – bringing baby home

Sealing the Chakras/Final rites

Benefits of a 3-day home vigil

Bathing, dressing and anointing the body

Dry-ice preservation


Laying the body ‘In Honor’

Decorating the cremation casket

The Jewish Taharah ritual

Cultural and Religious after death traditions

Self-care for caregivers – preventing burnout


Prerequisite Level II Conscious Dying

Space is limited to 20 students to maintain the intimacy of the group.

Early reservations recommended

Please click the link below to pay $600 for this individual workshop


Pay in Full HERE  for the 3-Level, 75-hour Training to receive $100 discount

Workshops takes place in a private home in West Los Angeles.

December 7, 8 & 9

Friday, 3 PM – 9:30 PM.  Saturday 9 AM – 6PM.   Sunday 10AM – 5PM

Please contact Olivia for questions about accommodations and payment arrangements


This was more than a learning experience, this was a sacred experience…discovering how to channel the frazzled energy of still-fresh grief into something that matters by caring for the body at home. I appreciated the classy, comfortable, relaxed, nurturing, safe, cocoon-like environment that we are offered to take in this information. Olivia is warm and kind and genuine, and her compassion and dedication are palpable. I liked the movie clips; the sharing; the hands-on practice; the professionalism; the thorough syllabus but most especially Olivia’s real life experiences of guiding families  through this sacred passage”   – Laurie C.iardullo



Officiating the Funeral & Memorial Service   

             This master certificate program is open to those students wishing to train as                    a funeral celebrant. 



Creating the Life Celebration 

The funeral celebrant certificate training is for anyone seeking to create a personal and meaningful funeral or memorial service for a loved one and those wishing to investigate a career as a funeral celebrant.

The Celebration of Life service is the commemoration of one’s unique contribution to humanity and the opportunity to leave a legacy.  What will yours be?  how will your life be remembered ?  How can you create a fitting tribute for your loved-one? 

Students are encouraged to think outside the box and give full reign to their imagination and creativity during this highly energized workshop where powerful ceremonies are created to honor the dead. 

This workshop is open to anyone and is also the master class for The Art of Death Midwifery training. Graduates of this class receive a certificate for 25 hours training as Funeral Celebrant.

“This was more than a learning experience, this was a sacred experience…discovering how to channel the frazzled energy of still-fresh grief into something that matters…both personally, and on a larger scale.”                     – Laurie Ciardullo



Topics explored

The importance of a funeral

Alternative funeral and memorial services

The role of the Celebrant

Public Speaking

Writing the eulogy

Channeling the grief

Opening and closing remarks /prayers & poems

Announcements/Obituaries/Video Journals/Programs

Tributes & rituals

Pet Funerals

Cremation and Burial Practices around the world

Green Burials


$100 early-bird discount if registered by June 15, 2018

There is no prerequisite for this class.

Students receive a certificate of completion for 25 hour Funeral Celebrant Training

Please Click on the date to make your reservation

July 13, 14 & 15  2018

This workshop takes place in a beautiful private home in Pacific Palisades, West Los Angeles, California. Details given to registered participants.

Accommodations are not provided, please visit local b&bs in the 90272 and 90025 and 90405 area codes.

Friday 3 – 10 pm    Saturday 9am – 6pm    Sunday 10am – 6pm

For more information, please write to:




“The mock funerals each of our groups created were so achingly beautiful, meaningful and embodied. The bond with my “family” in just 2 days to create a funeral celebration was incredible – I really felt like I had endured an unimaginable loss, but was uplifted by ceremony and community.  This is an incredible spiritual practice that I highly recommend for everyone”.   – Suzanne S –

“This workshop was a very deep and profound experience for me.  The guest speakers, films and detailed information helped us put together amazing funerals in just two days. They were so real, so intense – just as they would be in real life.  I enjoyed Olivia’s gentle guidance and encouragement in allowing our creativity to flow outside the box. I highly recommend this workshop to anyone who is open and brave enough to explore this incredible topic.”   – Thea Nathan –

“This workshop is incredibly intense, challenging, deeply moving and so much fun!! Everyone should have this experience so they can be prepared when a loved one dies.”     – Kym Chartrand –


Workshops are held in a beautiful private home in Pacific Palisades, West Los Angeles.

Tuition for each level is $600.  If you would like to pay in advance for the entire program, cost is $1700.



Friday 3 pm – 9:30 pm,     Saturday 9:00 am – 6 pm,      Sunday 10 am – 6 pm

Dinner on Friday evening is provided. Participants provide their own bagged lunch on Saturday and Sunday.  The gardens and pool are available for your pleasure.


Please write to Olivia  for details and a list of local bed & breakfasts:




“I learned so much more in these workshops than 14 years in the traditional funeral industry. That is just what is was…industry.  This is sacred work.” – Josette Astaria Sheets. 

Our cancellation policy is as follows: 

* Students who pay in full for the entire program ($1700) and wish to cancel, will receive a full refund (less $100 paypal fees and administration cost) if Sacred Crossings is notified at least 30 days before the start of the 1st workshop.

* Students who pay in full for one workshop will receive a full refund of $600  (less $100  fees and administration cost)  if Sacred Crossings is notified at least 30 days before the start of the workshop.

* If student is unable to attend a workshop due to unavoidable circumstances and advance notice of at least 14 days is given, then student may defer payment to a future workshop of the same value (less $100 fees and administration cost)

 * If student is unable to attend a workshop due to unavoidable circumstances and advance notice of at least 14 days is given, and student is unable to take a future class offered by Sacred Crossings, a refund of 50% of the workshop fee will be returned to student

* If student is unable to give advance notice, and does not show for 1st day of class, the workshop fee is nonrefundable. 

Please visit our CLASSES page for a complete list of classes offered by Sacred Crossings and don’t forget to join our mailing list to be alerted of events in your area.

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Thank you for your interest in Conscious Dying and Family-directed Funerals. We look forward to sharing this sacred journey with you.

Sacred Crossings

Sacred Crossings