Funeral Homes provide many options today. The options are limited only by the imaginations and desires of the deceased and their family. The important concept of any funeral is to suitably remember and honor the life of the deceased in a manner that best suits both them and their family and friends.
Memorialization at church, funeral home, or other facility
Religious services of any faith/denomination, or secular services
Funeral services culminating in burial or cremation
Burial and cremation are simply two methods of final disposition of the body. The choice of either method does not affect your choice of other service elements.
A funeral service recognizes the deceased and comforts those in grief. It is usually held in a funeral home or at a church. The casketed body is present, and burial or cremation follows the service. Many funerals are religious, but they do not have to be.
A memorial ceremony commemorates the life of the deceased after burial or cremation. Musical selections, special speakers, candle lighting, keepsakes, and a memory table can all add meaning to the ceremony. Memorial ceremonies are often held in a funeral home or at a church. In the case of cremation, the urn may be present.
Family and friends can pay their respects and express their care and support at the visitation, which is usually informal and held at the funeral home. It is an unstructured communal gathering of friends and family. An open or closed casket, or an urn may be displayed. Occasionally, a prayer vigil, group ritual, or a few informal brief remarks might be included at some point during the visitation. Note: viewing and visitation are not necessarily the same thing; one can have viewing as part of a visitation, but may also have a closed casket or urn present instead.
A graveside service provides an intimate final goodbye. It is usually a simple service with poetry or scripture readings. It may be the final element of a funeral or memorial service, or done independently. Veterans may choose to have military honors at the graveside.
Whether burial or cremation is chosen for final disposition, visitation and/or service can precede or follow the disposition.
There are innumerable ways to individualize a funeral service. Consider special readings or music for funeral or memorial services. During visitations, you might display personal memorabilia, hobby materials, video tributes, memorial candles, memory books or photo boards (video tributes and memorial candles can be obtained through us), or take a few moments for a speaker to share thoughts with those present. Some might also wish to include religious ceremonies such as parish vigils or rosary services, or rituals by organizations such as the VFW, American Legion, or Masons during visitations. Further personalization is possible in the selection of merchandise, from custom casket interiors or burial vault appliqués to engraved or embossed urns. The order of services might be tailored to suit your preferences; some might choose to have a private graveside service followed by a public memorial service, for example. Far from being intimidated by the numerous choices, you should feel free to consider any options that best suit your needs and desires.
For more information, including prices, please download our "How Much Does a Funeral Cost?" brochure, or contact us.