THE VALUE OF A FUNERAL
Not unlike weddings or graduations, a funeral brings together families and friends and encourages them to share their thoughts and feelings.
There are numerous benefits that a family will receive from having a funeral service for their loved one. Some of these benefits are:
- The funeral provides a support system for the bereaved family.
- The funeral helps the bereaved family to understand that death is final and reinforces the fact that death is a part of life.
- The funeral encourages the embracing and expressing of pain.
- The funeral reaffirms a person’s relationship with the person who has died.
- The funeral offers a time for family and friends to remember the person who died through sharing of their memories with others.
- The funeral offers a time and place to talk with others about the life and death of their loved one.
- The funeral provides a time to say goodbye.
- Most importantly, the funeral is the beginning of the grief process. A person must experience the funeral in order to move on through the grieving process.
THE IMPORTANCE OF VIEWING OR VISITATION
Viewing is the best way for a person to accept the death of a loved one. Without viewing or visitation, there is a chance that denial will set in. Allowing ourselves, though sometimes difficult, to view a spouse, parent or grandparent is a large step in the healing process. If a person avoids viewing or visitation, then it is our imagination, and the mental picture that it draws, that we will have of our loved one. Often this mental image is more destructive than good, especially when the death has been sudden or accidental.
Whether the final disposition of a person is an earth burial or cremation, the viewing by family and friends is very important and should not be avoided.
It is most important that the family has an opportunity for viewing and saying goodbye. What some people do not realize is that often friends and neighbors need that same opportunity. A person’s family can never know the exact impact that the deceased person has had on the lives of others in the community and therefore, it is important to give those people a chance to say their goodbyes as well.