Funerals – Memorials – A Good Goodbye
T here are many ways we say goodbye to a loved one and as with grieving, this process is personal and unique to each individual. Funeral services and memorial services are also diverse, ranging from an elaborate ceremony, to a simple private ceremony, to no funeral service or memorial service at all.
Each person leaves behind a unique legacy and this it is the goal of a funeral service to honor that legacy and memory. The funeral service should be personalized. Often a theme representing the deceased favorite past-time, profession or hobby is incorporated into the service. Sometimes, especially with a memorial service the ceremony is a reminiscing informal celebration of life. There are no right or wrong ways to honor the family member, but it should reflect the wishes of the deceased and the family.
For ways to save on the services see our article “Five Ways to Save on Funeral Services” and and still honor the loved one.
Some families like to give flowers and some do not. Find out why flowers and give and the types in our article Memorial and Sympathy Flowers“.
Funeral Service Options
It is our job to help you through this difficult time and assist you with any funeral services you wish. We give you the best experience possible during this difficult time.
Regardless of your religious tradition, we will be able to help. Some articles on the various religious customs. Catholic, Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim
Simple Final Viewing for Family
Short Viewing for Family and Friends
Longer Formal Viewing
Committal Service at the Graveside (for body or cremains)
Traditional Funeral Services
- Visitation -The visitation is held at a funeral home or other appropriate location and is for the family and friends to gather and say goodbye, expressing support and love. The deceased’s body is not required to be present, but often traditionally is.
- Funeral Service – Most commonly the funeral service is held at church, yet this is not required. It has become increasingly more common to hold the service at other locations, such as a location which was important to the deceased..
- Committal Service – This is the graveside service or the location of the scattering of cremains.
Non - Traditional Funeral Services
Perhaps you are looking for something totally different.
The processes called Natural Organic Reduction (NOR) is the return of the body’s nutrients back to the each by natural composting. Since optimalconditions are maintained, the process takes only a couple months to complete.
The result is about 4 cu ft of rich soil that in visually and chemically indistinguishable from any other soil.
Even though not available in California currently, we can easily transport your departed loved one to Washington State for this process of Natural Organic Reduction.
Memorial services are often less formal and tend to be more a celebration of a persons life, focusing on the many positive aspects of their life. Usually, there is not much of a religions component associated with memorial service as opposed to the traditional funeral service.
Embalming – Do we need it?
The process of embalming is rarely required by law. It is very often performed however when the deceased is being viewed at a service and enables the body to appear asleep, at peace and generally makes the deceased more appealing to view inside the casket. Embalming is NOT permanent preservation. It is a method of temporarily preserving the remains for just a few days. If there is no viewing of the body – embalming is often forgone.
3 Reasons for embalming
Prefaring Funeral / Memorial Service
Many decisions need to be made while arranging and scheduling a funeral or memorial service. The key questions below will help you get on the right track and although not an extensive list, are a great start. As always, we are here to help you in any way possible to get through this difficult time. It is important to have some type of funeral service as it helps with healing – funerals are really for the living. For additional question the many families have look at Funeral Question and Answers
Is the deceased to be present? (casket/urn)
Who will deliver the Eulogy? (i.e. clergy, friends)
What flowers are desired ?
Is there a guest book?
Will there be a video tribute?
Is there going to be a catered reception?
Perhaps the person like to surf – so you could hold the service on the beach. Perhaps they liked horses so hold it in a stable. There are no rights or wrongs – it is about honoring them!
Having appropriate music really helps make the service special.