• How to Express Your Sympathy When You Can’t Attend a Funeral

    Cemetery Oahu

    After someone passes, timing and distance mean that it is not always possible to attend the funeral services. Fortunately, even from afar, you can offer your condolences and extend your support to the friends and family left behind. If you can’t attend a funeral service, consider these ideas for conveying your sympathy to the family.

    Send a Card or Flowers
    A sympathy card is an easy way to let the family know you are thinking of them, even if you can’t attend the funeral. Write a personal note in the card to express your feelings and offer your support. Sending flowers is another custom that many people appreciate. Before sending, check with the funeral home to see if flowers are being sent there and that flowers are in keeping with the funeral traditions of the family, as some faiths do not believe in the use of flowers for mourning. If you have a close relationship with the family, sending flowers to their home rather than the funeral home can also be a meaningful gesture.

    Make a Financial Tribute
    If there is a cause that was close to the heart of the deceased or that matters to the family, make a donation in the name of the deceased person. For instance, a donation to a cancer research group could be an appreciated tribute for someone who battled the disease, or a financial gift to an alma mater could hold special significance for the family.

    Plan a Future Visit
    It is normal for there to be an outpouring of grief during and immediately after a funeral, but as people return to their lives, the family often finds themselves alone with their mourning. Planning a future visit means you can offer your support at a time when most other people have stopped and the family really needs it.

    If you’d like to offer condolences to family who is having a funeral at Valley of the Temples Memorial Park in Oahu, HI, please visit our website to send a tribute or to learn more about the services. You can also contact us at (808) 239-8811 for more information about our funeral, burial, or cremation services.

  • Preventing Family Disputes During the Funeral Planning Process

    Funeral Planning

    Funeral planning can be a stressful time, and it can sometimes inflame or even instigate family disputes. Don’t let disagreements cost you and your family the ability to support each other through this difficult process. Use these strategies to reduce the chances of a dispute as you make decisions as a family about how to pay tribute to a lost loved one.

    Speak Up and Listen
    Communication is key during funeral planning, especially when family members are in conflict coming into the planning process or when they have differences of opinion about things like burial versus cremation or the religious elements of the funeral ceremony. Rather than holding onto your frustration and letting it build, speak clearly about your opinions and why certain actions are upsetting to you, without being accusatory. It is equally important for you to listen to the same feedback from your family members. Calm communication can help you form a team to work together to achieve your shared goal instead of fighting each other on every decision.

    Be Willing to Compromise
    It is possible that family members have very different opinions about what a lost loved one would have wanted. When this happens, pick your battles and be willing to compromise on things that don’t matter as much to you. Often, rejecting someone’s idea of what a loved one would want in his or her funeral can feel like you are suggesting that their relationship with the deceased was not as important as yours. Compromise so that everyone’s feelings can be honored.

    Rely on the Funeral Home
    The funeral home can offer a great deal of help and guidance during this process and give families in conflict tips for finding a way forward. You can rely on them fully when you are planning a funeral to take some of the pressures off of your shoulders.

    You can help your family avoid these kinds of disputes with funeral pre-planning with the help of Valley of the Temples Memorial Park. You can learn more about pre-planning funeral services in Oahu, HI, by calling us at (808) 239-8811.

  • Understanding Shiva

    When someone of the Jewish faith passes away, shiva is an important part of the funeral and mourning process. If you want to support a Jewish friend who has lost a loved one after the funeral services are over, you may wish to visit them while they sit shiva. This video will help you understand what to expect.

    Shiva is a period of mourning that begins after funeral services and burial. Although shiva can last for an extended period of time, when most people talk about shiva, they are talking about the seven-day period after someone is buried during which the family “sits shiva.” They sit on low stools or on the ground as an act of respect and of support for each other in their mourning. Friends may visit the family during this time to offer their condolences and support.

    At Valley of the Temples Memorial Park, our funeral home in Oahu, HI, is adept at honoring a variety of funeral traditions. Let us help you with funeral planning and burial in your family’s time of need. To contact us, please call (808) 239-8811.