Traditional and Cremation Services
At the time of the arrangement conference we will guide you through the choices available to help you make an informed decision regarding the funeral that you desire for the one you have lost.
Traditional Funeral Service with Viewing or Visitation and Burial
The traditional funeral service remains the most commonly chosen type of service. The traditional funeral service is held with the decedent present, with either an open or closed casket, within three or four days of the death. You and your family decide whether the service is to be open for all to attend or privately held. It is also your decision as to whether the ceremony will be held at the funeral home or in your place of worship. At a typical traditional funeral a member of the clergy officiates. Funeral ceremonies usually contain scripture readings, a sermon, prayers, a eulogy, hymns, music and sharing of memories by those present. Cultural customs and religious denomination determine the specific elements of the ritual that is used. A procession to the cemetery will follow, and prayers of committal conclude the ceremony.
For a graveside funeral service, family and friends gather at the cemetery for the ceremony. Typically a member of the clergy officiates. A graveside funeral ceremony can consist of many of the same elements that a service in the funeral home or your place of worship possesses. Scripture readings, a sermon, prayers, a eulogy, hymns, music and sharing of memories by those present are most often a part of this type of service. Please keep in mind that choosing a graveside funeral service places you at the mercy of the unpredictability of the weather.
Cremation Funeral Service
Many of our families choose to blend a traditional funeral service with cremation. The traditional funeral service is held with the decedent present, with either an open or closed casket, within three or four days of the death. You and your family decide whether the service is to be open for all to attend or privately held, in the funeral home or your place of worship. Once the ceremony has concluded the decedent is taken to the crematory. Burial of the cremains, if desired, takes place at a later date, and may be either open for all to attend or private.
Immediate cremation includes no ceremony or service. The cremation may take place only after completing and filing with the State of Pennsylvania a death certificate that has been certified by the physician who attended the decedent. A cremation permit is then issued. The permit along with the authorization to proceed signed by the next of kin or authorized representative of the decedent will allow the cremation to take place. In the State of Pennsylvania there is a twenty-four hour waiting period after the time of death before cremation can be performed since cremation is irreversible. In Montgomery, Bucks and Delaware Counties permission from the County Coroner must also be obtained before a cremation can occur.
Cremation with Memorial Service
Most of our families that choose immediate cremation desire a visitation and memorial service. At a memorial there is time allotted to receive the comfort and support of family and friends. Following that time a member of the clergy officiates at a service. Memorial ceremonies usually contain scripture readings, a sermon, prayers, a eulogy, hymns, music and sharing of memories by those present. Cultural customs and religious denomination determine the specific elements of the ritual that is used. A memorial service need not be limited to our funeral home or your place of worship. A procession to the cemetery can follow and prayers of committal conclude the ceremony.
Options for Final Disposition
Final disposition options for the families who choose cremation include burial of the cremains in a cemetery or scattering on land or at sea. They may be kept at home or placed in a columbarium niche. When planning to scatter the cremains or keep them at home, please discuss your thoughts with your funeral director and clergyman, as the scattering of cremains is regulated by law and also by religious practice.
Most major events in life are planned. Choices are made in advance and wishes are carried out at the time the event occurs. Pre-planning a funeral is no different. Pre–planning gives your family the gift of being able to focus on beginning to heal from their loss and it removes the added pressure of having to make all the decisions about how to honor your memory. You give to them the ability to know exactly what you desired through your careful and thoughtful decision making. There is no cost obligation for arranging one's choices and keeping them on file at our funeral home. If pre-payment is desired or necessary, we offer individual irrevocable burial accounts for the secure feeling of knowing that your funeral monies are there for you when the need arises.