Ok, let’s talk about the one thing that everyone needs to know about…. Funeral Etiquette.
This one is a touchy subject, I feel that my wedding planning experiences can help aid in this topic of conversation. For the next few minutes I am going to try my best to help anyone who will be attending a funeral. Let’s face it, we will all have to attend one, one day.
Rule #1 Timing…. the most important…if the funeral has a start time of let’s say, 1:00pm. It is going to start at 1:00pm. Most pastors, priests and officiants start when the service is supposed to start. My advice, do NOT show up at 12:58 that is taken as a sign of disrespect and is poor funeral etiquette. The rule is always arrive at least 20-30 minutes early. Now I know that might sound extreme however, funerals are not like most social events or weddings. The families do not know how many people will be attending. These services are planned in less than a week. You do not RSVP for this event. So, coming late might make it difficult for you to find a seat, you might disrupt the family who might be processing into the church/hall with a casket or urn. Sometimes families have way more people attend then they had thought would. So, showing up early will save you the hassle of having to stand for the entire service.
Rule # 2, This is about honouring the deceased and the deceased family, this is not the time to approach the family, as they are getting ready for the service to start. That isn’t the most appropriate time to ambush them with stories and your feelings. Wait till the reception. That is the correct time to speak with the family, share stories, memories and celebrate the life of their loved one.
Rule # 3, You do not have to wear black at a funeral service, however when choosing an outfit make sure it is conservative and respectful. Stay away from distracting patterns and loud colours.
Rule #4 This is one that gets me, the first few rows are usually reserved for close family members (immediate family) If you are the 8th cousin and haven’t spoke to the family in years you can almost guarantee you will not be sitting there, if you are the best friend of the 3rd cousin of someone who has passed…. You will need to find another seat. They are reserved for family.
Rule #5 Children at funerals. It is ok to bring your children to the funeral. However, if they are misbehaving, crying or being a bother…… please exit the service until they regain composure. There is nothing more distracting then a crying baby or a kid throwing a temper tantrum.
Rule #6 and probably the MOST IMPORTANT…..Put you phone on silent before you even enter the building!! There is no need for any more of an explanation on this rule. If you miss a call or text, people will understand you are at a Funeral Service.
Please keep in mind, these are my personal beliefs. Common sense, maybe… but still my beliefs.
I hope you enjoyed. Please feel free to leave a comment about any experiences or advice you would like to share.
Written by Brittany Tucker.