How COVID-19 Affects Planning A Funeral

By: Alterna Cremation
Friday, May 15, 2020

Planning a funeral is challenging at the best of times, whether you’re planning someone else’s or pre-planning your own. The strange circumstances we find ourselves in presently have had an important impact on how we can hold funerals. Here, we’ll explore a few options for funeral planning in the time of COVID-19.

 

First, we must acknowledge that one of the most difficult parts of the pandemic is physical distancing and avoiding crowds. In the Province of Manitoba, there is a limit on social gatherings over 10 people. For most, this is a serious blow to funeral plans. Traditionally, funerals have involved large gatherings of people in enclosed spaces. Given that it’s unsafe to do this at present, there are a few other options available.

 

The first option is to delay the funeral. This is particularly practical for a few reasons. When there are relatives who live far away, you may want to delay memorial services until they can gather together. These days, it’s not even possible to travel internationally! When you choose our Winnipeg cremation services, delaying a funeral service is simple. You can keep the urn in your home or another suitable location, and have the full-fledged service once things have calmed down.

 

The second option is to opt for a digital service. This service can be either live streamed or recorded and then uploaded online. A secure link can be provided so that only chosen friends and family have access to the stream, though the invitation could be made public if that’s your preference. These services can be highly customizable, from choosing who can enter the chat  and comment, to directing the focus of the stream to different speakers. With recorded services, you might proceed in a manner very similar to a traditional service, then send the recording to friends and family.

 

There are a number of other options to host a service, too. Some people have been experimenting with drive-through services, in which friends and family pull up to a window to give their condolences to the bereaved. One could envision a number of other methods of holding a service while maintaining social distancing - a large-scale Zoom conference for a wake? A service that happens over a long period of time, allowing for proper physical distancing? A degree of creativity and flexibility allows for a fitting (if a bit untraditional) service. 

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