Many people like to serve food at funeral services or memorial services. Even though this is not necessarily an obligation, it has become some sort of a tradition. If you and your family are unable to provide food to your guests for any reason at all, you don’t have to. People understand that you are grieving and busy, that you have a lot on your plate, and they don’t expect anything from you.
However, if you do decide to serve some food for guests at a funeral service or a memorial service, it’s going to take some planning. To help you out, here are some things that you must keep in mind:
If you only expect close friends and relatives to attend and the crowd is small, you have a wide variety of options to choose from when it comes to funeral food. However, if you expect a huge number of people to show up, it’s better to go for food items that can be prepared in bulk.
The kind of food that you serve completely depends on your personal choice and/or your culture. However, to give you some ideas, here are some common funeral foods – Mac and Cheese, fruit and vegetable tray, salad with dressing on the side, cookies and brownies, dinner rolls, lemonade, coffee, etc.
Oftentimes, it is up to you and your family to prepare the foods. Do not hesitate to ask for help from friends, and they will be more than willing to help you out. Your community can even take care of the food if you are really close. Check with your church community as they may have a special ministry just for this purpose. Some well-wishers may even bring sympathy dishes for you. If your budget allows, consider catering.
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When a loved one dies you can choose to have a graveside service, which is simply a funeral service held at the grave, the site of burial. You can either have a graveside service as a stand-alone ceremony, or it can be conducted after a traditional funeral service held at home, church or a funeral home.
If you are planning a graveside service, here are some important tips to keep in mind:
Make sure you let people know if it's a private ceremony
If you are having a graveside ceremony, make sure you let people know clearly whether it is open to all, or only meant for close friends and family members to attend especially if you are having a graveside service after a traditional service. People will assume that it's open to all if you don't make your announcement. They will understand if you prefer to keep the graveside service a private event.
Know how a graveside service differs from a traditional funeral service
Planning a graveside service isn't the same as planning a normal funeral ceremony. For instance, you won't require pallbearers, and by the time attendees have arrived the casket is usually already in place. In most cases, viewings are not allowed, or if allowed, it is only for a brief period. Only one eulogy is delivered in most graveside services, and live music isn't necessary but can be arranged. Flower arrangements are also minimal or not present at all.
Graveside funeral services are highly cost-effective
If budget is an issue then you can benefit greatly from having just a graveside funeral alone without having a traditional funeral service. For instance, you can cut costs by not having to rent a funeral home or hire catering. You also don't have to pay money for renting limousines, hiring musicians, etc. as these won't be necessary.
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Loss is a profound, personal experience that is never easy no matter the circumstances, which is why writing a heartfelt and genuine condolence message can be so difficult. You are afraid that you will say the wrong words and make the loss even worse, instead of offering them consolation. You may be afraid that your message might not sound genuine.
We understand how daunting such a simple task can be, so here are a few tips to help you write a condolence message.
Address them by their names
First, start the message by addressing the bereaved with their names. For instance, Dear, so and so. If youre writing to a family, make sure to include each members name.
Start by offering your condolence
The body of the message should begin with you offering your condolences. You must acknowledge their loss and let them know that you are truly sorry for their loss. For instance, Im sorry to hear about your loss is a simple yet effective choice of words.
Share positive, personal experiences with the person
It always helps if you can include positive, personal experiences with the person. For example, if the deceased ever helped you or you both had a good laugh, then include that. Families love to hear uplifting stories about their loved ones. You can also include qualities the deceased had that you admire.
Let them know you are ready to help
The next step is to let the family know that you are ready and willing to help them out in any way that you can. Let them know you are there for them in any way that you can. The important thing is that they receive support from those who matter.
Sign off with care
Finally, end the message with an appropriate sign off like With my love or Our sympathies, and so on.
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Losing a loved one is difficult, and having to oversee everything for their funeral makes the experience even harder. You’ll be so preoccupied with getting everything organized that you won’t even have time to mourn and say your last goodbyes. This is where a funeral director comes in.
A funeral director and his or her team takes care of embalming and preparing the body, planning every detail of the service--from handling paperwork to choosing which flowers will be displayed. They are people who can take a huge burden off your back during a difficult time. It is important to find a funeral director that you can trust and depend on. So before you hire one, make sure he/she has these qualities:
A good funeral director should be able to lend an ear patiently to all their clients with the understanding that each of them is likely to have different requirements. They should be able to listen to your concerns, requests and questions and put you at ease.
A good funeral director should be patient and understanding of the fact that you have just lost an important person in your life. While communicating with you they should be very clear, concise and effective without being rude or disregarding.
If you ever feel like your funeral director is pressuring you into something you don’t want, like going for a higher-priced product or service, understand that this is not professional behavior. A good funeral director should never take advantage of their clients during a time when they are most vulnerable.
A good funeral director should have no hidden costs and should openly share their prices with their clients. They should also have fair market pricing.
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Planning the funeral of a loved one is no doubt a painful and difficult experience, but it can even be more stressful when you have to do it from a distance. Today, many families live apart from each other. So, when someone passes away, a family member who lives in a different city or country may have to plan the funeral remotely before they can come home.
Whatever the case may be, planning a funeral from afar poses many challenges, but it is not an impossible task. Here, we will discuss challenges remote funeral planning impose and important points to keep in mind that will make it easier and less stressful for you.
Challenges to remote funeral planning
If you haven’t lived in the area for a long time or haven’t lived there at all, it is highly likely that you may not know the local funeral homes and directors and which ones are the most trustworthy. When you are not the familiar with the area, it becomes more difficult to get things done from far away.
Another thing is that once you get to the area, you may not have time or energy to make all the necessary arrangements for the funeral, which is why it is best to take care of everything as early as possible.
Important tips to keep in mind
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