How a body will be cared for after a death is an important decision. Today, most people in America are buried or entombed (which means the body is “buried” in an above ground monument such as a mausoleum). People select burial based on a number of factors including the desire to keep with tradition or, in some cases, for religious or cultural reasons.
For thousands of years, funerals have been a means of expressing our beliefs, thoughts and feelings about the death of someone we love.
The Funeral Ceremony:
- Helps us acknowledge that someone we love has died.
- Allows us to say goodbye.
- Provides a social support system for us and other friends and family members.
- Allows us to contemplate the meaning of life and death.
- Offers continuity and hope for the living.
- Meaningful funeral ceremonies are rites of passage.
A funeral service helps us move from life before a death to life after a death. The funeral also provides a safe place to affirm the worth of our relationship with the person who died and express our feelings of loss. Another way to think of the funeral is as a final tribute to the person who died.