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6 Important Questions to Ask When Planning a Funeral

Planning for a funeral can be a stressful and rather chaotic happening, especially if the person died suddenly. Proceeding with confidence and ease of mind is not so easy when confronted with one of life’s most difficult situations. Attempting to keep everyone happy as well as giving respect and proper remembrance to the deceased is no walk in the park, but having answered the following six questions will make the way ahead much less overpowering.

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  1. Do you know of any exact desires the deceased may have has with regards to the type of funeral they wanted? It is important to satisfy the requests of the deceased when planning their funeral. After all, the service is for them, and to give proper respect and honour to their memory, their particular wishes should be satisfied. Many people have died wanting to be cremated for example, but family members who were frightened of this process or who found it distasteful have neglected to fulfil their obligations. Such an oversight can cause irreparable rifts between family and friends who knew of the deceased’s wishes and those who didn’t carry them out.
  2. Do you need to choose between a burial and a cremation? If so, it is important to know and understand the procedures and processes of each. Many people are against cremation because of religious beliefs or simply because they can’t bear the thought of their loved one being burnt. Educating yourself about the peculiarities of each can help to alleviate some of the fears associated with cremation, and give you a broader knowledge of burial rites and options.
  3. If you’ve chosen a burial, have you decided on a cemetery or other location for the interment? There are many more options for burial than just the local churchyard. Many people are now choosing to be buried in forests and natural woodlands, as well as on private land. If you decide on a woodland area, it’s crucial to know of any regulations or special arrangements you need to make. If the burial will be on private land, make sure that the owner is in agreement, as some allow funeral services, but frown on bodies being buried on their property.
  4. Will you hold a wake or viewing, and where? The decision to have a wake or viewing is a personal decision, but one that must be made and shared with those who might be attending. Parents with small children may not wish them to see the body, while others will want to say their final goodbye this way. Make sure the wake is held in a respectable place that can accommodate all of the guests, and that there is adequate parking and access for the disabled or elderly.
  1. Have you chosen a funeral director? Choosing an appropriate funeral director is important to the smooth running of the funeral service. An experienced director can assist you with all of the intricacies of planning a funeral service, even helping you with the required legal documentation. An inexperienced one on the other hand, can cause embarrassment and upset if they are neglectful in performing their duties.
  2. Have you asked family members and friends if they’d like to be involved in;
    • Decorating the church, hall, or coffin
    • Supplying content for the ceremony
    • Conducting or participating in the service
    • Being a poll bearer

Involving family and friend who may wish to contribute is an extremely important aspect of planning a funeral. Though some will readily volunteer to help, others who wish to may be a bit shy to ask, feeling that it might be too forward of them. Asking anyone who was closed to the deceased if they'd like to get involved will help them to deal with their own grief, while actively giving remembrance to their friend or relative.

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