Sunday, June 05, 2005

Funerals at home

Like the hospice movement, which since the 1960s has helped the terminally ill die peacefully at home, the home funeral movement aims to protect what it calls individuals' 'right' to care for their own at death. At its most abstract, promoters say, it hopes to dispel the fear and denial that accompany an institutionalized approach to death, and return life's final act to its historical position as a natural, profound and private event.LINK

We recently had a baptism at home for our newest grandchild, but it never occurred to me to have a funeral at home. At first blush I don't find a problem. After all, the funeral industry was not an industry until what we like to think of as "modern" times. Washing and preparing a body for burial was at one time as ordinary as childbirth. I have to think about this one for a while.

Tip Jarvis

1 comment:

Jim said...

When I was a child in West Virginia it was most common to have a wake, with the coffin in the living room of the deceased person's family home. It was one of the key ways I learned about death, and not to be afraid of it. When you're six years old, and in the middle of the night you awaken knowing there's a body in the other room, and that dad and mom are not afraid, you learn that death is part of life. It was a good thing.