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    How to Invite Guests to a Funeral

    Last updated 2 months ago

    When you plan a funeral for a loved one, one of the biggest tasks you have is letting people know when and where the funeral service will be held. It can be hard to know exactly where to begin, but there are several different ways to approach inviting people, so you can choose the method that feels right to you.

    Traditionally, families invited people to funerals by calling them. If you use this method, you can take part of the burden off of your shoulders by asking other family members to split the task with you. Today, sending emails to notify people is also acceptable and can be less time consuming and emotionally draining than phone calls. You can also opt for personalized e-card invitations. Be sure to also put information about the funeral in the obituary if plans are in place when it goes to print.

    Funeral guests can find information about services on the Chapel of the Chimes website, which can be another helpful tool for families. Find out how we can support you with your funeral planning needs by calling our Hayward funeral home at (866) 475-9407. 

    What to Do After a Loved One Passes Away

    Last updated 2 months ago

    The period after a loved one’s death can be stressful and confusing. In the midst of the emotional turmoil, there are also many tasks that need to be completed, and knowing where to start can be difficult. Your funeral home can help walk you through the process, but here is a look at some of the first things you must do when a loved one passes away. 

    Alert the Appropriate People

    Right after a loved one passes away, your initial focus may be on notifying family and friends, but you’ll also need to report the death to the appropriate authorities in your area. In most cases, this means your loved one’s doctor and a funeral director. The doctor and funeral director will work together to complete the death certificate you’ll need to handle your loved one’s final affairs. The funeral director will also arrange for your loved one to be transferred to the funeral home. If your loved one passed away at a hospital or care facility, the staff can help you alert the right people. If the death occurs elsewhere and you’re not sure what to do, call 911.

    Choose Disposition Method

    The first decision you have to make when it comes to planning a funeral is whether your loved one will be buried or cremated. If he or she pre-planned the funeral, these choices will be straightforward. If not, make the choice you think best represents your loved one’s wishes. The funeral home will help you with the planning that follows from that decision, such as choosing a cemetery and funeral service location.

    Invite Family and Friends to the Funeral

    Once the funeral plans are in place, let family and friends know about the arrangements. You can call them, send emails, or send electronic invitations. Keep in mind that out-of-town guests will need time to make appropriate arrangements.

    At Chapel of the Chimes, we know how confusing this time can be, and we are here to make it as simple as possible for you. Let us help you navigate the funeral planning process so you can focus on loved ones. Learn more about our Hayward funeral home by calling (510) 471-3363. 

    How to Help Children Deal with Loss

    Last updated 3 months ago

    The loss of a loved one is difficult for adults, but for children, the challenges are greater. Kids may not know how to cope with the emotions they feel. This video looks at some of the ways you can help the children in your life cope with this kind of loss.

    Providing children with some time away from the emotions surrounding funeral planning and grief is important. Although families shouldn’t try to hide their sadness from kids, young people also need an outlet to let them know it’s OK to still smile. It also helps for kids to spend time in the company of other people their age who have suffered a loss.

    At Chapel of the Chimes in Hayward, our funeral home provides grief and healing support the entire family can rely on in a time of need. When you need assistance with funeral planning, please call us at (510) 471-3363. 

    A Look at How Funerals Have Changed Over Time

    Last updated 3 months ago

    Funeral customs are constantly evolving with the passage of time. For instance, inviting people to a funeral, which was once done exclusively by phone, is now often done by sending e-card invitations. Services that were once only held in religious institutions are now being held everywhere from favorite restaurants to parks. How did the funerals of the past compare with today’s customs? Here’s a look at some old funeral traditions that have disappeared. 

    Families Tending the Deceased

    Before funeral homes were established, it was customary for families to tend to their lost loved one themselves. They would wash the deceased, dress them for burial, hold viewings at the house, and bury the person on family land. This practice began to change when families started calling cabinetmakers to create coffins for burials. Eventually, some cabinetmakers made coffins their full-time business, and funeral homes grew around those services.

    New Preservation Techniques

    Embalming is the norm today, but it only dates back to Civil War times. The practice was invented so that lost soldiers could be sent back home to their families for funerals and burial, and it has persisted. The first president to be embalmed was Abraham Lincoln.

    Funeral Directors’ Expanding Roles

    In the early days of the funeral industry, selling coffins was the main focus. As funeral homes expanded, they began providing other services, such as facilitating funeral planning and hosting visitations. Today, funeral directors must wear many hats. In addition to the practical support they offer to families, one of the biggest jobs for directors today is to provide emotional support for grieving families. They must listen to families talk about their feelings and offer referrals to grief support services as needed.

    Today, Chapel of the Chimes is a full-service funeral home that can help with every aspect of funeral planning. From pre-need services to personalized memorials, we meet all of your needs in a single location. Get the support you need with funeral planning by calling our Hayward funeral home at (510) 471-3363. 

    Mandela Monument Design Competition Draws Hundreds of Submissions

    Last updated 3 months ago

    SAN MATEO, Calif. – Nov. 7, 2014 – Nearly 200 design entries were submitted for the creation of a permanent monument honoring the life of the late Nelson Mandela. Skylawn Funeral Home and Memorial Park and Chapel of the Chimes partnered with the Nelson Mandela Foundation and the Oakland chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) on the contest which was open to all U.S. residents over 13 years of age and closed in mid-October. By Dec. 31, 2014, the Nelson Mandela Foundation will announce the winning memorial designer’s name, along with the date of the unveiling ceremony which will take place in summer 2015. Skylawn will construct the winning design and permanently host the monument at its park in San Mateo.

    Hundreds of architects, artists and students from across the country honored Mandela’s contributions to world peace, human rights, social justice and democracy through their designs. The competition judges were touched by the deeply personal impact the creative process had on the designers. Many cited the process as a way to truly understand the importance of humility and Mandela’s legacy. 

    Read more here.

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