Traditional Funeral Services
The Basics of Traditional Funeral Services
Traditional funeral services can include:
Visitation: This is often called a viewing or a wake. Many families choose private, family viewings, sometimes including close friends. Guests come to pay their respects to the deceased by viewing their casketed body and spending time with the grieving family. A visitation can occur at any time before the funeral service. Often, a viewing or visitation can take place an hour prior to the service beginning. Closed caskets are becoming more prevalent.
Funeral Service: This event commonly takes place at a place of worship, at the graveside only or the funeral home. We at A Sacred Choice will encourage more funerals to be held at places of worship, as our mission is to assist in bringing people back to church. It can include music, the reading of literary or religious passages, a eulogy, prayer, and the singing of hymns. We understand that is not necessary that the service be religious, but may contain more contemporary music, friends and family members providing eulogies, poems and the display of personal items that reflect the interests of the deceased. Also, DVD presentations are often requested. We recommend this tribute be shown at the reception after the completion of services. Again, it our mission to assist churches in growing the Kingdom of God by encouraging church/synagogue funerals.
Committal Service: If the family plans to bury the deceased, this can involve a vehicle procession to the cemetery. In Houston, more and more families are choosing to have a private, family only committal service first and then go to the church to have a Memorial Service. Some religions prefer the more traditonal order of service and then interment/inurnment. Using the term Memorial Service indicates to those planning to attend that the casket will not be present.
Funeral Reception: Many choose to host this post-service gathering (or repast) at a parish hall or fellowship hall. This is considered a time to share memories, laughter, and provide support.
A funeral service, whether traditional or more modern (memorial service or celebration-of-life), has two functions: to acknowledge the death and lifetime achievements of an individual and to bring grieving family members and friends together in support of one another during this difficult time.
If it becomes necessary for you to make funeral arrangements for a loved one, we invite you to call us at 713-637-4933 to begin.
Rostad, Curtis, "The Basics of Funeral Service", Indiana Funeral Directors Association, 2014