Traditionally there hasn't been much variation in Western funeral practices, with casket burials and church services the norm. Contemporary society, however, is moving away from traditional funeral and burial practices, towards increasingly personalised and non-secular funerals. Let's look at some helpful tips for planning a modern Australian funeral.
Consider cremation or burial
Whether you decide on having a traditional burial or cremation is a very personal decision. Many Australians without the financial capacity for a traditional burial opt for cremation as a cheaper option. While cremation is an increasingly popular decision in Australia, the environmental impact of cremation is considered by some to be unnecessary. If you are looking for a green alternative, perhaps consider a natural burial in a biodegradable coffin or shroud so that your remains can return to the earth naturally. Speak with your local funeral director to discuss cremation and burial options in your local area.
Consider the final resting place
If you opt for cremation, would you like your ashes stored in an urn, at a cemetery or scattered in one of your favourite locations? Many modern Australians choose the latter, having their ashes scattered by friends and family members along the coast or from a mountain top. This is a wonderful way for your loved ones to say goodbye, and it assists in the grieving process. Often, it also encourages friends and family to visit that location and remember your time together with fond memories.
Consider the funeral director and venue
As we move away from conventional church funeral services, the popularity of non-secular memorial venues is increasing. You can personalise your funeral by choosing the venue and host right for your belief system and wishes. Although some people no longer wish to have their funeral at a church, you can elect to have your service presided over by a priest or pastor. Alternatively, many funeral directors offer non-secular venues, and will present a service tailored to the requests of both you and your family.
Consider the wake
After your funeral service is over, the wake is a time for family and friends to grieve together. If you are a long-standing member of your local football, soccer or bowling club, this may be the perfect venue for your wake. Alternatively, you may wish for a more informal setting — perhaps a favourite fishing spot on the river or your family's favourite summer beach location. Thinking about where you'd like your wake will give you a little control over the personal touches of your funeral proceedings, and it will help your family and friends to grieve in a warm and loving location.
Planning for your funeral and burial now, both financially and practically, will take the strain off your loved ones during their grieving process, while assuring that your final wishes are met. Consult with both close family members and a funeral director from a funeral home like Lee Adam Funeral Services to discuss your options.