My wife's grandfather just passed. I asked for an address where to send a mass card, and she had no idea what I was talking about. I thought this was a common thing to send to the family of the deceased. Some further investigation revealed that mass cards are a strictly Catholic thing, and not all Christian religions use them. My wife's parents attend a United Methodist church, so I figure it is safe to assume that is their religion. So what do United Methodists do for funerals?
I'm interested in learning more about funerary rituals and memorials for the dead in different cultures. Can anyone recommend any good texts? This is a wide-ranging inquiry, so all cultures and historical periods are welcome.
A not very close family member recently died and I would like to attend their memorial. However, I know that I will cry during the memorial and I feel weird about that. [more inside]
Has someone important to you passed away? What was the most comforting/most respectful thing anyone said to you when that happened? I work with the elderly, who die at an accelerated rate. 98% of the time, I genuinely care about the deceased and would like to give comfort to the surviving family. Since this comes up a lot, I feel as if I'm repeating the same phrases over and over. I need more options. I'm specifically asking for things people said to you that were kind. [more inside]
At present, what is the most environmentally friendly way to deal with a human body after they die? [more inside]
My father unexpectedly passed away last weekend from a heart attack. I am not religious. Part of my family, and most of our community of friends & extended family, are. Help me navigate the religious talk without either going on the defensive, or being complacent. [more inside]
Philosophical approaches to death and dying. I am prepping a college course; looking for great readings on philosophical questions about death, but also: world religious/cultural traditions about dying/funerals/mourning/afterlife, how people in death-related jobs see their work (undertakers, hospice workers, doctors, chaplains, military/police...), writings of people who have terminal illnesses, psychological research on preparation for dying, etc. [more inside]
I'd like descriptions or, fiction about, gang and gangster funerals. [more inside]
This question is morbid, but I've always wanted the answer. How on earth do funeral parlors (especially those that do cremation) operate in neighborhoods or right next to them without smelling horrible? [more inside]
A (work) friend's husband was recently killed in an accident. What is the protocol for sending cards, flowers, letters, etc., to the surviving family? [more inside]
Is there a big list (with general descriptions, optional) of jobs in the death industry? [more inside]