Cemeteries all over the country offer lots of different services with the overall intention of helping the bereaved not only plan and execute a respectful service to honor the deceased, but also to get through the many different steps and actions associated with a death. When most people think about cemeteries in Charlotte, NC, they most likely picture undertakers in dark suits, flowers and caskets. Cemeteries are actually much more than that.
Some common cemetery services include help with planning:
- Committal (or Graveside) Services – While memorials and funerals oftentimes include a graveside service, graveside services can also be performed independently from other funeral and cremation services. When a graveside service is not preceded by a funeral or memorial, it’s called a committal. Committal services are generally very brief but have some ceremony around lowering the body into the grave and covering it with soil. These services take place at the cemetery, columbarium, mausoleum, or wherever the body’s final resting place may be.
- Memorial Services – Memorial services are very similar to funerals, except for a few key differences. Fist, the body does not have to be present at a memorial service. Since the body is not present, there is no time or scheduling constraints for memorial services, and the body can be cremated beforehand. Memorial services are typically less religious and more informal than funerals and are hosted in a variety of locations.
- Viewings and Visitations – Viewings and visitations are also generally held in tandem with a funeral or memorial as they allow family and friends to visit with and express sympathy for the funeral hosts. Viewings and visitations help people grieve together in an intimate, less formal setting. Visitations are events in which family, friends, acquaintances and more can stop by to express sympathy and grief with the immediate family of the deceased. They are usually held at the funeral home, but can sometimes take place in a church, home or other location. Viewings are when the deceased’s casket is open for final goodbyes and visits. They occur before or during the visitation.
- Funerals – A funeral is a formal event or ceremony about the deceased, typically with religious or cultural leanings. Funerals are mostly used to remember and celebrate a death, and to allow family and friends to grieve together. A funeral usually happens a few days after death in a funeral home, church, or even the deceased’s house. For an event to be a true funeral, it requires the body to be present and intact. Most funerals have reading, hymns, sermons, eulogies or speeches throughout the ceremony.
Cemeteries can also help the bereaved with transfer of the deceased from the place of death, notifying relatives, friends and coworkers, filing all permits, certificates, and authorizations, planning special ceremonies or events including Veteran’s services, and assistance with social security claims.
Not every cemetery offers the same services, so be sure to check with your local cemeteries for a complete list of their services. Gethsemane Cemetery and Memorial Garden offers a range of Charlotte, NC cemetery services. Call us today for more information about what we can do for you.