What is the Proper Etiquette at a Funeral and Wake?

What is the Proper Etiquette at a Funeral and Wake?

Funerals can be awkward and stressful for many people – going to a funeral can be intimidating, especially if you’ve never been to one or haven’t gone to one in a while. It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with funeral etiquette and customs, so you will feel more comfortable going. Don’t miss out on a funeral because you’re unsure of how to act or be. The family will truly appreciate your presence to show your sympathy and support to honor the loved one who has passed. 

Every funeral you attend will be different, especially if there are different religious or cultural customs, but most funerals have many things in common.

Funerals are not often talked about as you can imagine – it’s not a happy, uplifting topic. Because of this, we often don’t know how to be, act, dress, talk, etc. at a funeral. It’s normal to have worries or concerns about going to a funeral, but if you educate your self on some funeral norms, you will be more at ease.

Customs to Remember Before Attending a Funeral

  • It isn’t necessary or mandatory to wear black to a funeral, but it is better to dress modestly in muted colors. Stay away from bright, flashy colors and outfits.
  • At a wake visitation, you will give your respects to the family and the one who has passed. You will briefly talk to the family/surviving loved ones and view the body/ashes if on display.
  • At a church or funeral home, sit a few pews or rows back so the closest family members can sit up front.
  • If your child can behave during a funeral service, it is more than OK to bring them.
  • It can be hard to figure out what to say to the family during a funeral, wake, or service. Share your condolences with him and kind words to show you care. Avoid saying things like the deceased is in a better place now.
  • It is usually normal for you to bring food to the family at their home to show your respect.
  • If you’d like to send flowers, send them to the funeral home or the home of the deceased.
  • If you’ve lost the loved on and will be receiving condolences, a simple “Thank you” is more than enough to say back.
  • Try your best to arrive on time for the funeral. The wake usually has a window of time where it’s OK for you to arrive.
  • Stay until the end of the funeral service.
  • Pay respects to the family before leaving any service.
  • How long you stay at someone’s home after a funeral will depend on how well you knew the deceased or the family. Try not to overstay your welcome.
  • If you don’t want to view the body, you do not have to, but be prepared that a body may be in the room. If you do want to view the body, take a few moments to either stand or kneel by the casket. You can say a prayer or a few words silently to yourself or just bow your head in silence.

Looking for a Funeral Homes in Jacksonville, Florida?

If a loved one in your life has recently passed, we offer our condolences. Attending a funeral or wake is on nobody’s favorite to-do list, but it’s something good to do to honor our loved one who has passed, to say our final goodbyes, and to give our condolences to the family.

When you arrive at a funeral or wake and still unsure of how to act or where to go, follow others’ leads. The above etiquette tips can surely make you feel better about attending both a funeral or wake. We hope the reminder of these customs helps you during this hard time.

As a Jacksonville, Florida, funeral home, we know every family has different needs, and we have the expertise and skills to meet your needs. We have been honored to serve the Jacksonville community since 1880 and would be honored still to help you and your family with this transition at Evergreen Cemetery, Funeral Home & Crematory.

We provide personalized and meaningful funeral and cremation services to our clients in the Jacksonville community.

If you’re looking for funeral home Jacksonville, Fl, our team at Evergreen can help you with the process.  We look forward to talking with you about options to accommodate you and your family. Call us at 904-353-3649 for more information, or visit our funeral home Jacksonville, FL contact page.

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