Frequently Asked Questions
It’s important to recognize that the Celebration of Life is for the living … for those who are affected by the loss of a loved one. It is through the celebration process that a number of emotional needs are met for those who grieve.
What Options Are Available in Services and Disposition?
A Celebration of Life is similar to other ceremonies in our lives. Like a graduation ceremony, a wedding, a baptism, and a bar mitzvah, a Celebration of Life is a rite of passage by which we recognize an important event that distinguishes our lives. It celebrates the life that has been lived, and offers family and friends the opportunity to pay tribute to their loved one. This will help those who grieve to face the reality of death and consequently, to take the first step toward a healthy emotional adjustment.
Whether a Celebration of Life is elaborate or simple, such events are often individualized to reflect the life of the deceased and to hold special meaning for family and other survivors. A service may reflect one’s religious beliefs as a reaffirmation of faith in a greater life beyond this world. Some families choose to reflect upon the occupation or hobbies of the deceased, and some choose to center the event around an ethnic background or social affiliation.
In our society, three basic forms of final disposition are practiced – earth burial, entombment in a mausoleum and cremation. Any of these three final disposition choices should be complimented with an appropriate Celebration of a life lived and cherished.
What Does a Celebrant Do?
Our staff includes two Funeral Celebrants. Both Dirk and Terry DeJong have received special training to serve as Celebrants. A Celebrant is a person who seeks to meet the needs of families during their time of loss by providing a funeral service that is personalized to reflect the personality and lifestyle of the deceased. They lead the Celebration of Life with much the same comfort as a member of a clergy would at traditional services though celebrant services can limit the religious tones as the family sees fit.
What Does a Funeral Director Do?
It has been estimated that over 136 individual activities must take place in order for one Celebration of Life to be conducted. The funeral director is actually an organizational and event specialist.
Here is a condensed list of some of the more visible activities of a typical funeral director.
- Removal and transferring the deceased from place of death to the Funeral Home.
- Professional care of the deceased, which may include sanitary washing, embalming, restorative arts, dressing, hairdressing, casketing and cosmetology.
- Conduct a complete consultation with family members to gather necessary information and to discuss specific arrangements for a unique and personalized Celebration of Life.
- File all certificates, permits, affidavits, and authorizations, as may be required.
- Acquire a requested amount of certified copies of the death certificate needed to settle the estate of the deceased.
- Compile information and create an obituary for placement in the newspaper and/or website of the family’s choice.
- Make arrangements with a family’s choice of clergy person, certified Celebrant, church, music, etc.
- Make arrangements with cemetery, mausoleum, crematory, or other place of disposition.
- The providing of a memorial guest book, prayer cards, service folders, Life Tribute videos, and acknowledgements, as requested by a family.
- Offer the assistance of notifying relatives and friends.
- Arrange for clergy honorariums, music, flowers, death certificates, obituaries, additional transportation, etc.
- Care and arrangement of floral pieces and the post funeral distribution as directed by a family.
- Arrange for pallbearers, automobiles, and special services (fraternal or military) as requested by a family.
- Care and preservation of all floral cards, mass cards, or other memorial contributions presented to the funeral home.
- Our Celebration of Life associates will direct the event in a most professional manner, and be in complete charge of the funeral procession to the cemetery, mausoleum or crematory if desired.
- Assist a family with social security, veterans insurance, grief counseling, and other death-related claims.
- Post-Celebration follow up to make sure all of your needs have been handled to your satisfaction.