Funeral – Death Care Blogs and Resources

End of Life Resources and Blogs

The Inspired Funeral  Amy Cunningham is a Brooklyn-based funeral director and celebrant with a passion for helping families arrange dignified, distinctive funeral and memorial services.

The Amateur’s Guide to Death & Dying: Our primary outreach is to terminally ill, chronically ill, elder and dying people, but not exclusively. Concerned family and friends, healing and helping professionals, lawyers, clergy, teachers and those grieving a death are all welcome

Sacred Crossings  The mission at Sacred Crossings is to educated and support individuals toward a conscious, peaceful transition and to empower and guide families to reclaim the healing ritual of a home funeral.

The Funeral Rule  The FTC Funeral rules gives you certain rights. Know them

Beyond Yonder Death Midwifery  My vision is that we become culturally re-engaged with deathcare through the practice of death midwifery

Virtual School for Community Deathcaring  The mission of the BEyond Yonder Virtual School for Community Deathcaring in Canada is to acknowledge and accept our North American alienation from death, and to encourage cultural re-engagement with community centered dying, death care and grief.

Funeral Consumers Alliance

Funeral Laws and Your Rights

What is the Funeral Rule?The Funeral Rule, enforced by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), makes it possible for you to choose only those goods and services you want or need and to pay only for those you select, whether you are making arrangements when a death occurs or in advance. The Rule allows you to compare prices among funeral homes, and makes it possible for you to select the funeral arrangements you want at the home you use. (The Rule does not apply to third-party sellers, such as casket and monument dealers, or to cemeteries that lack an on-site funeral home.)

Your Rights Under the Funeral Rule

The Funeral Rule gives you the right to:

Buy only the funeral arrangements you want. You have the right to buy separate goods (such as caskets) and services (such as embalming or a memorial service). You do not have to accept a package that may include items you do not want.

Get price information on the telephone. Funeral directors must give you price information on the telephone if you ask for it. You don’t have to give them your name, address, or telephone number first. Although they are not required to do so, many funeral homes mail their price lists, and some post them online.

Get a written, itemized price list when you visit a funeral home. The funeral home must give you a General Price List (GPL) that is yours to keep. It lists all the items and services the home offers, and the cost of each one.

See a written casket price list before you see the actual caskets. Sometimes, detailed casket price information is included on the funeral home’s GPL. More often, though, it’s provided on a separate casket price list. Get the price information before you see the caskets, so that you can ask about lower-priced products that may not be on display.

See a written outer burial container price list. Outer burial containers are not required by state law anywhere in the U.S., but many cemeteries require them to prevent the grave from caving in. If the funeral home sells containers, but doesn’t list their prices on the GPL, you have the right to look at a separate container price list before you see the containers. If you don’t see the lower-priced containers listed, ask about them.

Receive a written statement after you decide what you want, and before you pay. It should show exactly what you are buying and the cost of each item. The funeral home must give you a statement listing every good and service you have selected, the price of each, and the total cost immediately after you make the arrangements.

Get an explanation in the written statement from the funeral home that describes any legal cemetery or crematory requirement that requires you to buy any funeral goods or services.

Use an “alternative container” instead of a casket for cremation. No state or local law requires the use of a casket for cremation. A funeral home that offers cremations must tell you that alternative containers are available, and must make them available. They might be made of unfinished wood, pressed wood, fiberboard, or cardboard.

Provide the funeral home with a casket or urn you buy elsewhere. The funeral provider cannot refuse to handle a casket or urn you bought online, at a local casket store, or somewhere else — or charge you a fee to do it. The funeral home cannot require you to be there when the casket or urn is delivered to them.

Make funeral arrangements without embalming. No state law requires routine embalming for every death. Some states require embalming or refrigeration if the body is not buried or cremated within a certain time; some states don’t require it at all. In most cases, refrigeration is an acceptable alternative. In addition, you may choose services like direct cremation and immediate burial, which don’t require any form of preservation. Many funeral homes have a policy requiring embalming if the body is to be publicly viewed, but this is not required by law in most states. Ask if the funeral home offers private family viewing without embalming. If some form of preservation is a practical necessity, ask the funeral home if refrigeration is available.

This information is provided by the Federal Trade Commission

Historic Cemeteries in the United States

cemeteryThe cemetery is much more than merely the final resting place of a loved one; it thus serves as a memorial ground in which existing loved ones, close friends, and family members can visit and cherish the wonderful memories you both shared. Just so you understand, cemeteries differ, and these distinctions reveal the cultural practices and religious values a person has. Though many people may have different ideas on how they feel if they had any thought of the cemetery, this is so because many may have encountered the cemetery with grief in their heart, while to some others they just can’t help it but smile. Here are a few of the oldest cemeteries in different regions of the USA.

  • Tolomato Cemetery

At the place of an ancient Catholic Mission, the Tolomato Cemetery was established in 1565 and even identified as the oldest cemetery in Florida. In 1565 the cemetery was located outside the city walls of St. Augustine, but at the moment it is positioned in the busy Famous Downtown region at 16 Cordova Road. Following Florida ‘s timeline of history, then for 20 years the British manage, the 2nd Spanish Period, a US Region and in 1845 being a state, the cemetery has indeed experienced many transformations with the last laid to rest in 1884. Apart from Catholic priests as well as the early Menorca’s settlers, the cemetery is the final resting place of various Florida dignitaries coupled with an unmarked grave for the 2nd Spanish Era Governor Enrique White. At present, it is behind a ferrous fence with a closed gateway. Nevertheless, the cemetery some time ago was much more substantial with graves considered to be under Cordova Road.

  • Old City Cemetery

Also referred to as the Old Methodist Cemetery, this certified traditional landmark began in 1806 as a free burying ground. It is located presently in Virginia. The 27-acre site provides a lot more than 2000 historic gravestones, historical monuments, as well as ironwork enclosures; Butterfly Garden & Lotus Lake; Chapel together with Comfort Area, designed for marriage ceremonies and special events. A garden of 19th-century planting and native architectural relics; Pest House Healthcare Museum, depicting complications in a Civil War quarantine clinic is also present. Cemetery Central, housing a business office and also a mini-museum of mourning culture;

The cemetery features a hearse house and caretaker museum, having an original 1900 horse-drawn hearse and grave markers display. Simple railroad history is depicted in the State House Museum an 1898 C and O railway depot, this section covers about 2200 graves of civil war soldiers from about 14 states. It holds some essential history of the African-American giving a simple analysis of the integration of slaves as Americans.

  • Oakland Cemetery

Established in 1853 historic Oakland Cemetery was designed to function as the significant non-denominational cemetery in the town of St. Paul. Merely minutes from downtown, it is indeed the final resting place of such notables as Ramsey Alexander, Sibley Henry, Amherst H. Wilder and also Harriet E. Bishop to list a few. Oakland Cemetery was created to be a park-like environment with groves of trees and shrubs, suitable routes together with access roads. Since it’s creation, over 50,000 persons signifying all facets of St. Paul’s life and historical past have been laid to rest within the cemetery’s elegant 100-acre environs. With these significant features such as the St. Paul Firefighters memorial, Soldier’s Rest(burial ground) as well as the granite stone structured chapel, Oakland Cemetery is a celebration of historical past along with the people of St. Paul.

In conclusion, there are indeed other old cemeteries in the United. States, however, these three got a wide range of historical events, though they can’t be entirely explored in this article.

Natural Burial Resource

Natural Burial

burial optionsWhy do more and more people pre-plan for a more natural burial?Natural burial can be considered as one of the best options available out there for traditional burial. In today’s world, natural burial has received much attention, especially because of climatic changes. It can be considered as an eco-friendly method of burial when compared to the traditional burial.

From the recent studies, it has been identified that a lot of people who live out there in theworld pre-plan for natural burial. Before analyzing the reasons that have led individuals towards this decision, it is important to have a clear understanding on what natural burial is. Natural burial is not associated with a burial vault, a casket or embalming fluid. The remains of a dead person are placed into the earth directly through this method. This method would create an ideal environment for the dead body to decompose in a natural way. This process is associated with the least impact on the environment. In some cases, the dead body is placed inside a simple burial shroud or a biodegradable casket. During natural burial, heavy equipment or machinery is not being used in order to dig the grave site. In fact, the grave sites are dug through hands.

Plenty of reasons are available for the people to pre-plan for a more natural burial instead of traditional burial. People who live out there in the world are extremely concerned about the impact that is created on the environment by human beings. As mentioned earlier, natural burial has the ability to create minimum impact on the environment. If you are a person who is looking forward to minimize the carbon footprint after death, you must go for this option. On the other hand, some people think of natural burial as the traditional method available for burial. Before the commercialization and industrialization of funerals, dead bodies were buried using this method. By making the decision to go ahead with natural burial, you are taking a step to follow the footsteps of our ancestors.

Caskets are made out of a variety of toxic materials. When the remains or a person is buried along with a casket, those toxins would get leaked into the environment as it decomposes. The decomposition process isn’t a carbon neutral one as well. It would take a considerable period of time for the casket to break down into the soil. In most of the caskets, you will be able to find metal parts such as hinges and handles. They can slow down the time taken towards decomposition. On the other hand, a large amount of energy is being wasted during the process of manufacturing and transporting caskets. They can give life to a considerable amount of carbon emissions.

People who are concerned about making this world a better one for the future generations therefore think about going ahead with natural burial. If you also share the same dream, you can start pre-planning for it.

Natural Burial Resources

Green Burial Council        Natural Death Center        Natural Burial Association