submitted by Jason “Oz” Oszczakiewicz, Owner/Supervisor, Varcoe-Thomas Funeral Home of Doylestown, Inc.
When a family chooses cremation it does not limit their funeral choices. There are several misperceptions that many families believe, but families can be just as creative as families selecting traditional arrangements.
While advertising makes it seem like direct cremation is the only choice, when you choose cremation you can have any kind of service or any kind of memorial you wish. That means you can have a traditional service and a cremation, direct cremation followed by a memorial service, a scattering and a permanent cemetery niche, or space in a cremation garden. A permanent place to remember loved ones fills an important need that a scattering just can’t.
Many families don’t realize that with a direct cremation, when the body is removed, they can view a loved one again prior to cremation. Many funeral homes require positive identification before cremation occurs, especially when family members are not in attendance at the place of passing. Many states also require 24 hours to pass prior to cremation for any investigative purposes or before a death certificate can be signed by a physician and a cremation permit issued by a coroner’s office.
Many religions also accept cremation as a form of disposition. Today, there are some families that still do not think the Catholic Church allows cremation, but the Cremation Rite has actually been around since the 1960’s. Families should check with their individual clergy or church regarding cremation and religious restrictions.
Cremation also has the connotation as being the “inexpensive” type of funeral. In many ways, cremation can be less expensive than traditional burial expenses, but can also be as equally as expensive if a family selects traditional visitation, selection of a wooden or rental casket, urn selection and burial of the urn or placement in a niche.
Families should consider all options before making hasty decisions when it comes to cremation arrangements, because there are many different options available today to meet the needs of each family.