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FUNERAL PREPARATION

What Kind of Services Are Available?

The kinds of funeral services available are as varied as the lives of the individuals whom they are celebrating.

Every funeral has the possibility of being a unique experience which commemorates the life of a valued friend or loved one.

Funerals traditionally have been held at churches, synagogues, or at the funeral home, but that does not mean they cannot be held at some other location. It is possible, for example, for a funeral to be held at a park, at a senior citizen center, a school, a home, or almost any public place requested by those arranging for the funeral.

fIn terms of the funeral ceremony itself, again it is possible to include a diversity of things that will help celebrate the life of the individual. A variety of musical styles may be included in the service. Friends and family members may participate through speaking, reading, and sharing about the individual who has died. A display of photographs from events in the person’s life is now frequently included in the plans.

Probably the best way to respond to the question of "What kind of funeral services are available?" is to ask, "What would you like to do?" and then follow through on those wishes. A conversation with your funeral director will alert you to possibilities that exist for making a funeral exactly what you would like it to be.

What Do Funerals Cost?

The cost of a funeral, like other family events such as weddings, can be selected within a wide range of prices. But unlike weddings, many people are not familiar with the items and services that are necessary for a funeral.

Funeral costs can be put into four categories:

  • the merchandise purchased, such as caskets and memorial folders;
  • the professional services of the funeral director, who handles the details;
  • the use of the funeral home, equipment, and staff;
  • and finally, the transportation required for the funeral.

It is important to realize that within each of these categories there are choices that you may select based on your wishes for the funeral and budget.

Because the costs involved with a funeral change over time, it is best to contact Brust Funeral Home to discuss options and prices with them. The funeral home will make available their current General Price List which itemizes the costs associated with funerals.

There is no charge or obligation to you for meeting with Brust Funeral Home to ask for information about costs for a funeral, so do not hesitate to contact them for any questions you may have.

What Is Embalming?

Embalming is the process of sanitizing and chemically treating the body of the deceased. This process reduces the presence and growth of microorganisms, retards the decomposition of the body, and restores an acceptable physical appearance.

Embalming is usually not required in cases of immediate burial or immediate cremation, and for some religious groups who bury within 24 hours of death. Most funeral homes require embalming if there is to be a public viewing, if the body is to be kept for more than 24 hours, or if the body is to be transported across state lines.

Embalming is the first step in preparation of the body for viewing. Preparation also includes shaving, hair dressing, cosmetizing, clothing, and casketing prior to viewing and services.

Any concerns you may have about the need for embalming can be discussed with your funeral director.

Why Do Embalming?

Embalming is the process of sanitizing and chemically treating the body of the deceased. This process reduces the presence and growth of microorganisms, retards the decomposition of the body, and restores an acceptable physical appearance.

All of us have microorganisms in our bodies when alive. These organisms help us break down food in our digestive system. They do not die when our body dies. Embalming reduces their presence and growth in the body.

The cells of a human body begin decomposition immediately after death. We know that brain cells break down within minutes when they do not receive oxygen. Embalming retards the decay of the body for a period of time which is often necessary to allow distant family members time to gather.

When there is to be viewing of the body, either public or by the family, embalming restores the appearance of the body. This preparation helps modify and remove marks of accidents and disease. The restoration provides an acceptable memory picture of the deceased.

Any concerns you may have about the need for embalming can be discussed with your funeral director.

Viewing the Body

Permitting family and friends to view the body of the loved one at the visitation, or wake, and during the funeral service is a valuable experience for most people.

The most important reason for viewing the body is to help people accept the reality that their family member or friend has truly died. Part of grieving a death is accepting the loss of that person. Viewing the body helps many toward that acceptance and starts the process of healthful mourning.

A funeral director will always discuss the option of viewing the body with the immediate family. They will have the option of choosing whether the casket is open or closed during the public visitation and funeral.

Insisting that a person, especially a child, view a body is not recommended. Children have many questions concerning death, and it is often helpful for them to view the body and receive factual answers. It is a personal choice for both adults and children, and no one should be forced to view the body, touch or kiss it against their will.

Viewing the body is an important part of the funeral experience. Talking with your funeral director about your thoughts and concerns can help you reach an understanding of what choices would be best for your family.

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