This is an issue we hear about time and time again at Sunset View Cemetery & Mortuary: What should I do when my loved one made it clear he or she does not want a funeral or memorial service? What your loved one may be thinking is this will help the family by saving them time and money. But what some people here in the Richmond, Pinole, El Sobrante, and Kensington areas don’t realize is how much healing takes place with a meaningful tribute. Plus, when a funeral is preplanned, and maybe even pre-paid, there is so much pressure taken off the family during an already difficult time.
If your loved one has said “No funeral,” or even solidified his or her wishes for no service by preplanning, what options do you have?
Some might say to honor the loved one’s wishes. Others might suggest hosting a small, private get-together, where close friends and family members can pay their respects. Then there are those who would say funerals are for the living, and they will decide how to proceed.
As you can see, this can be an incredibly complex issue, and it’s one more and more Bay Area, Piedmont, and Albany families have dealt with in recent years. While there is no cut-and-dried solution, our professional team has a few suggestions for those of you who find yourselves struggling when a loved one makes this request.
We’ve been assisting El Cerrito, Oakland, and Berkeley families with funerals for more than 110 years, and we know the pivotal and highly meaningful role a service plays in the grieving process. A ceremony marks every transition in life: weddings, baptisms, graduations, and funerals. Gathering together to recognize the importance of the life that has been lived is essential after a loss. However, the tribute you plan does not have to reflect a “traditional” funeral.
We offer alternatives such as celebrant services instead of religious services, visitations with or without viewing, unique ceremonies to honor the person who has died, and receptions that feel more like a party than a funeral. We try to be creative in helping families make funeral arrangements, so the decisions truly reflect their personal preferences and the life that has been lived.
We can host an event at our facilities in El Cerrito. With our on-site reception services, whether you want to arrange a small gathering for a luncheon, host a large reception, or arrange for catering services, our professional team can help you create a one-of-a-kind event celebrating your loved one and respecting their wishes for something off the beaten path.
At Sunset View Cemetery & Mortuary, we believe every life has meaning, and we will work with you to design the tribute your family needs to bring healing. Reach out to us, and we will help you figure out your next step during this difficult time.