How to Start a Conversation About Your Final Wishes with Loved Ones

Having a conversation with your loved ones about your final wishes isn’t easy, but it may end up being one of the most important conversations you have. By talking to your loved ones about these needs, you will alleviate the pressure they will face when you are gone to make decisions about what they think you would have wanted. Having a conversation now about everything from your preferences for burial or cremation to which cemetery you’d like to be your final resting place will ease the burden on your loved ones during an already difficult time. These tips will help you start the discussion.

Start with a Reassurance

In some cases, bringing up the issue of your final wishes may cause your loved ones to worry that you have reason to believe you could be approaching the end of your life. If these are not your circumstances, start your conversation by assuring your loved ones that you are being proactive and that there is no underlying reason for bringing up your final wishes. Addressing this concern head-on will allow your loved ones to focus on the conversation instead of their worries.

Think Before You Speak

Before you start a conversation, take time on your own to consider your wishes and make decisions. It can help to write down some important points, the name of the cemetery you have in mind or a song that you would like to be played at a memorial service. Knowing what you want when you start the conversation will help you get all of the important details across.

Talk About Financial Planning

This conversation is the perfect opportunity to discuss the financial side of honoring your wishes. If you’ve made the decision to invest in pre-need services with a cemetery, make sure your loved ones know where the paperwork is and which cemetery to contact.

Pre-need planning with Inglewood Park Cemetery can play an important role in discussing your final wishes with your family. By investing in pre-need cemetery or cremation services in the Los Angeles area, you can remove this financial burden from your loved ones. Contact us today at (310) 412-6500 to learn more.

Can I Send Flowers Even If Donations Were Requested Instead?

When a family requests that you send donations to a charity rather than sending flowers to the cemetery or funeral home, you may still have a preference to send flowers. Is it ever acceptable to overlook the family’s wishes and send flowers instead?

Some people opt to both make a donation and send flowers, while others do choose to forgo the donation in favor of flowers. Although families are typically grateful for all of the gestures people make to support them in their grief, often, sending flowers after being specifically asked not to can cause more difficulties for the family. Often they are left with the task of finding places for and caring for the flowers, which for some people may serve more as a reminder of their grief than a comfort. If you wish to send flowers, consider waiting until a few weeks or more after the funeral and send a bouquet as reminder that the family is still in your thoughts. If you wish to include flowers for the grave or crypt-side, ask your florist to send them directly to the Cemetery. For your convenience, the Inglewood Park Flower Shop is just inside our Manchester Boulevard Gate. They can deliver them directly to the funeral home, or easily drive the arrangement right to the gravesite.

Inglewood Park Cemetery in the Los Angeles area offers complete cemetery and cremation services and can assist with pre-planning. To learn more, please call (310) 412-6500.

Planning to Say Goodbye

Death is a part of life, but few people plan for their final goodbyes. However, planning ahead for your final arrangements can help alleviate tough decisions for your loved ones, like choosing a cemetery, an appropriate interment locations, or planning cremation services. Pre-planning can even help to relieve some of the financial burdens on the family members who are left behind.

Watch this video to learn more about the importance of planning for a goodbye. Advanced medical directives, pre-purchased interment rights in a cemetery space, and funeral pre-planning can all be tremendously comforting to loved ones after you’re gone.

At Inglewood Park Cemetery, we can help you make decisions about cemetery and memorial services to take the burden off your loved ones. Contact our cemetery in the Los Angeles area today by calling (310) 412-6500.

A Look Back at the History of Cremation

Cremation is a popular choice today, but you may be surprised at just how long a history the practice has. In fact, cremation dates back to the Stone Age, and after an extended period of falling out favor, has become increasingly popular again over the past century. Take a look back at the history of cremation here.

Stone Ages through the Roman Empire

Historians believe that it is likely that cremation began as a practice during the Stone Age, probably in Europe or the Near East. The practice is thought to have spread relatively quickly throughout Northern Europe and the western portion of Russia and then to Greece, the British Isles, Spain, and Portugal during the Bronze Age. In Greece, cremation was encouraged as a means of slowing the spread of disease. In the Roman Empire, with the exception of early Christians, cremation was the preferred method of handling the decreased.

Christianity and the Decline of Cremation

After Constantine Christianized the Roman Empire, cremation fell out of favor. As Christianity spread, the decline in demand for cremation followed. From approximately 400 A.D. until the 1800s, burial was significantly more popular in Europe than cremation, while its popularity increased in other parts of the world. During this period, cremation was only embraced in Europe in response to the outbreak of illness or war.

Modern Cremation

In Europe and North America, cremation began to increase in popularity in the late 1800s. Medical professionals advocated for cremation to reduce the spread of disease and improve public health. Over the next century, the demand for cremation steadily increased. By 2009, over 36% of deaths led to cremations, with projections indicating that over 50% would be dealt with using cremation before 2020.

Roman Catholics and Cremation

According to a 2012 article in The Catholic World Report, “In 1963, the Vatican lifted the cremation ban. Since 1997, cremated remains have been allowed to be present at funeral Masses, and are given the same respect as remains in a casket. Cremated remains must be buried, just like a body, in a cemetery, crypt, or other appropriate burial place. Scattering ashes or keeping them at home is not permitted.” Ask us about the many beautiful Alcove settings we have for placing cremated remains.

Inglewood Park Cemetery is pleased to offer cremation services in the Los Angeles area alongside our other cemetery services. Whether you need help pre-planning your cremation or burial or need assistance planning service for a loved one who has passed, please call us at (310) 412-6500.

Get the Facts About Going to the Cemetery in a Funeral Procession

After a funeral service for a loved one, you may be part of a procession going to the cemetery for a graveside service. If you have never been part of a funeral procession, you may have some questions about what to expect. Here are some of the facts you need to know.

You will need to adjust your speed.

When you are part of a funeral procession, you will need to drive slower than you normally would. In most cases, funeral processions don’t exceed 35 to 40 miles per hour on secondary roads and 55 miles per hour on highways. It is important to maintain the same speed as the rest of the procession, neither pressuring the car in front of you to go faster or leaving a large gap between you and the car in front of you. It is important for funeral processions to remain tightly together, so that other cars cannot inadvertently enter the procession.

Funeral processions have the right-of-way in traffic.

Funeral processions always have the right-of-way in traffic, so follow the procession closely, even if you reach a stop sign or red light. Other traffic should yield to you. Often a military, police, or other motorcycle escort, will block cross traffic at major intersections to allow the procession to pass. ( Never insist on the right of way if someone simply will not stop, or tries to cut in line to make a turn. An accident will delay the entire procession and could cause a serious injury or fatality.) Generally, you should not stop during a funeral procession unless the entire procession has stopped or there is an emergency that prevents you from going forward.

You should use your headlights

Typically, cars in a funeral procession have magnetic flags placed on their hoods, or yellow banners on their windshields, that identify them as part of a procession. However, don’t rely on the flag or banner to alert other drivers. Every car in a procession should also have their headlights on. Don’t use your hazard lights unless asked to do so. The last car in a procession usually puts on their hazards to signal the end of the line, so using yours could confuse other drivers.

At the cemetery, the procession will be directed to the appropriate parking area for the service. At Inglewood Park Cemetery, we offer a variety of cemetery burial and cremation memorial options to help families honor their lost loved ones. Get more information about our cemetery services in the Los Angeles area by calling (310) 412-6500.

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