Karen Bernard, MA

With a Master of Arts in Culture & Spirituality, I bring a holistic perspective to my work as a doula, as well as to weddings, funerals and other services where people mark important moments with ritual and celebration.

As an End of Life Doula, I support people and their families in facing death as consciously and as peacefully as possible. With close to 25 years of counseling and community/family mediation experience, I am comfortable with intense feelings, as well as with the kinds of issues that can arise for families around a loved one’s passing. I help people reflect on the meaning of their lives, on what’s important to them in their final days, weeks or months, and on how they want to be remembered. I also help them develop rituals, if they’d like, surrounding their passing. 

As a celebrant I help families create ceremonies to honor their loved one, and then usually lead the service. I listen carefully to people’s stories and, if they want, I write a eulogy. I also offer relevant readings, as well as ideas for expressing what this individual and their passing means to family and friends. We might include music, poems, flowers, or any kind of personal touch that fits. Just as every person is unique, so is every service. I support people as they think through what feels right for them in celebrating their beloved.

I am a founding member of Pittsburgh Community Deathcare, and have helped to facilitate Death Cafes. When I’m not involved in death-related events, I’m often at the East End Food Co-op, where I serve in the board of directors and work as the book buyer, striving to offer information and stories that inspire people to live in more conscious connection. I also love mentoring homeschoolers and their parents, and I sometimes lead classes and workshops on topics like Food & Mindfulness and Mandala-Making.

You can reach me by phone at 412-482-7524 or email: kbsweethome@gmail.com