Mistakes to Avoid When Attending a Funeral Service
Funeral services are difficult, even if you weren’t close to the decedent. Many people are uncomfortable with the thought of death, and being unsure of the proper etiquette doesn’t help matters. Before you go to the funeral home, take a few minutes to brush up on the dos and don’ts of funeral etiquette.
Taking Your Cellphone
Taking a cell phone and leaving it on is one of the biggest mistakes a person can make at a funeral service. It’s easy to forget that you have your cellphone in your pocket or purse, especially if you’re accustomed to carrying it around with you. Before you exit your car, double-check your pockets or purse to make sure you don’t bring your phone in with you.
Avoiding the Family
Your presence at a visitation, funeral service at a house of worship, or graveside service demonstrates your support for the family. But it’s best not to leave without speaking with the mourners, even if you do not know them well. At a visitation, join the receiving line when you first arrive. You’ll wait in line to pay your respects at the casket before going down the receiving line of family members. Shake hands with each mourner and offer a few words of condolence. Then, you may take a seat if you wish to stay. When you attend a funeral service at a house of worship, you’ll likely shake hands and speak briefly with the family upon entering. Arrive early to ensure you do not miss this opportunity.
It isn’t customary to take photographs at a funeral. In fact, it’s almost never appropriate. The only reason why you might breach this rule of etiquette is if the family has specifically asked you to do so. If this is the case, use your discretion. Being respectful of the mourners takes precedence over recording the occasion.
Greenwood Memorial Park & Mortuary has been honored to serve families near San Diego with respectful funeral services since 1907. We invite you to walk the grounds of our memorial park and visit our funeral home when you’re ready to make the arrangements. We’re available at (619) 701-6473 to address all of your concerns.