Jason Meidl is the funeral director at Creston Valley Funeral Services. (Submitted)

Jason Meidl is the funeral director at Creston Valley Funeral Services. (Submitted)

Ask Your Funeral Director: Is having a funeral service important?

‘For many, a funeral is the first step in the grieving process.’

By Jason Meidl Funeral Director at Creston Valley Funeral Services

jason@crestonvalleyfuneralservices.ca

Human connection. It’s something that we all crave. It’s built into the very fibre of our being. Without it, we can’t grow and we stay stagnant. As I sit in my hometown on a visit to one of my favourite breakfast spots, I am sipping my coffee and watching and listening. I see a young couple unable to hold a full conversation without their phones in their hands, Without realizing it, I also find myself reaching for my phone rather than just enjoying the breeze and the sun. Our phones have become an extension of our being for better or worse depending on who you speak to. I would hazard a guess that for many of us not having our phones with us might cause a type of separation anxiety. As I spend time with my families and develop that human connection, I am always reminded how important it is to just be there, listening, supporting, being present. As we go through our next week I challenge everyone, myself included, be intentional with our human connection. Put the phone down, try doing it for five minutes without looking at it, then 20 minutes, and work up from there. Who knows – we might find that we would rather talk with the person we are having coffee with and relegate our phones to an afterthought!

“Do I have to go into the funeral home to make arrangements?” – Bill

This is dependent on the funeral home that you use. It’s completely up to the funeral home where funeral arrangements are being made. For the most part, arrangements are made at the actual funeral home. But I know that in today’s day and age, people can be spread out and that might mean that its not possible for someone to be present in person to make arrangements. One thing that I do is phone/virtual appointments when needed using the technology that we have at our fingertips. Another option that we offer is arranging home visits at a person’s residence. For some people, this may be more comfortable for them. My advice when choosing a funeral home to is to ask if they will do home arrangements when you first call. As funeral homes are all private businesses, it is up to the individual business as to whether they offer more than just the traditional funeral home arrangements.

“Is having a funeral service important?” – Becky

For thousands of years, funerals have allowed survivors to express their feelings about the death of someone they love. The rituals provide comfort when things seem chaotic and out of control. The funeral is for expressing intense grief. For many, a visitation followed by a funeral or memorial service is the first step in the grieving process. It is a time when friends, family and other guests can come together to grieve openly and to support one another in a community environment. It is also a time to say goodbye. Viewing the deceased for some can bring a sense of closure to the bereaved who may be in shock and denial. I believe it’s important for those left behind to do something for the departed. This might not be what we think of as a traditional funeral service but might be simply a gathering of friends for a dinner to share memories. I would say that, yes a funeral is important but how that “funeral” looks like might be different for everyone. Every person is unique and one of the most rewarding parts of my job is helping a family create a final leave taking celebration that is as unique as their loved one. A 92-year-old grandma recently shared her three rules for her funeral on TikTok… 1. You can cry but don’t cry too much, 2. Bertha is not invited, don’t let her in, 3. Have a drink in honour of me. I wonder what would your rules for your funeral be!

Keep the questions coming to jason@crestonvalleyfuneralservices.ca.

ColumnCreston Valley