A funeral is deeply personal, and we make every effort to assist families in creating a personalized tribute for their loved one. A service may be personalized in many ways. The family may use decorative memory tables with memorabilia and treasured belongings, picture boards with a history of family photos, special songs, Scriptures, poems, readings, memorial DVDs and much more. We offer personalized, creative, out-of-the box thinking when it comes to putting together a special tribute that is meaningful for your loved ones. Everything from the styling on the casket, to the flowers and decor can be a reflection of your lost loved one's preferences and personality. Whatever your loved one was passionate about and loved the most can be reflected in the service to provide a touching and memorable farewell for family and friends. We are very flexible and can accommodate any special requests made by the family.
A Meaningful Funeral
When death occurs, there is a universal need to acknowledge the life lived and publically recognize the loss. For thousands of years, funeral traditions have helped people of every tribe and nation cope with the grief and sorrow of losing a loved one. Today, families demonstrate their love for someone they have lost through ceremony and the public expression of grief in a funeral service. Funeral traditions in our society today have developed over time for a reason: they help family and friends find closure and healing following a loss.
Each aspect of the traditional funeral works together and helps families move from shock, disbelief and numbness to a greater sense of peace and acceptance:
The Visitation gathers family and friends in one place, allowing loved ones to process emotions together, spend time with the body, acknowledge the reality of the death, and offer support to one another. Intimate, warm and comforting, the visitation often becomes one of the most significant events in the family's recovery process.
The Funeral Service creates an opportunity to face grief and experience the full range of emotion connected with the loss. The service also allows the life of the loved one to be honored and remembered and helps loved ones find meaning in the loss through a hopeful and comforting message, often with spiritual overtones.
The Procession provides a visual picture of support as friends, neighbors and loved ones journey together to the final resting place. It is a public honoring of the deceased. A symbol such as the procession often speaks much louder than words.
The Committal Service offers family and friends the opportunity to say their last goodbyes. A few words are spoken at the graveside or at the crematory, and the family experiences a sense of closure as the body is lovingly laid to rest.
The Gathering celebrates a life well-lived. Food, fellowship and storytelling continue to comfort the family. Sorrow and mourning slowly give way to quiet reassurance that life continues to unfold even in the face of death.
The purpose of every aspect of the funeral is to work together to help families begin to heal after experiencing loss. A funeral allows friends and extended family to be present with the immediate family of the deceased, offer comfort and consoling words to one another, and activate the necessary support system which helps the family get through the next few weeks and months.
For more information on the purpose of the funeral ceremony, see Creating Meaningful Funeral Ceremonies: A Guide for Families by Dr. Alan D. Wolfelt.
Cremation is a form of disposition and an alternative to burial. Cremation is a versatile option for families that allows for flexibility in the timing of the memorial service. It also provides many options for remembering a loved one with cremation jewelry, decorative urns, and niche or ground burial options.
For cremation, several package options are available, including traditional services ending in cremation (including viewing of the body and visitation); cremation with memorial services at a later date (with urn present); and private family services followed by cremation. Direct cremation is also available. However, it is important to keep in mind that though the form of disposition is different, the needs of the family-to find closure and healing-are the same. Click here to read about the elements of a meaningful funeral.
A funeral director is always available to consult with families to assist in determining which cremation option is best for each individual situation.
The Importance of Memorialization
Following the funeral or memorial service, it is significant to memorialize a loved one by having a place for survivors to go and remember for posterity's sake. With cremation, this may be a memorial plaque where the remains were scattered, a burial site or a niche in a columbarium. What is needed is a physical place with a permanent memorial for both family members and future generations to come and visit. Our staff can assist families in finding a memorialization option that suits their needs.
Many people choose cremation for a variety of personal reasons. Some may choose cremation based on its lower cost or perhaps because of environmental concerns. Some may have a preference for scattering, and some may not like the idea of ground burial. Whatever the reason, cremation presents a family with flexibility of options and many choices for memorialization.