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    Why It Is Important to Attend Memorial Services

    Last updated 8 months ago

    Should you go to the funeral or shouldn’t you? This is a question everyone faces eventually. In some cases, you may wonder if your relationship with the deceased was close enough to make going to the funeral appropriate. In other instances, the thought of going to the funeral of an especially close friend or family member may simply feel overwhelming. However, going to a funeral offers many benefits to both the family of the deceased and to you. Here are a few of the reasons why going to memorial services when you can is helpful:

    Get Closure

    Sometimes, death comes after a long illness, and family and friends have time to say goodbye and make their peace with their impending loss. Many times, however, death comes quickly. An unexpected death can leave family and friends reeling, with mixed feelings and many things left unsaid. A memorial service is an opportunity to say goodbye to your loved one and take comfort in making one last gesture of care and love to him or her. This closure is an important first step in coping with the grief that lingers once the funeral is over.

    Support Surviving Family Members

    For the surviving family members, the loss of a loved one is a staggering blow. One of the best ways you can support these family members is simply by showing up for the memorial service. It can be an enormous source of comfort for family members to see that they are not the only ones who cared for their loved one. Even if you weren’t close enough with the deceased to have a relationship with his or her family, your presence at the memorial service will be appreciated.

    Memorials also offer a way to reconnect with family and friends and foster strong bonds. Chapel of the Chimes can assist you with funeral planning when you lose a loved one. Choose from a range of options for burial, cremation, and more. Get answers to your questions by calling our funeral home in Hayward today at (866) 475-9407. 

    How Different Cultures View Death and Dying

    Last updated 8 months ago

    At Chapel of the Chimes in Hayward, we pride ourselves on providing a range of funeral options for our diverse East Bay community. Every culture has a unique outlook on death, dying, and memorials. Our funeral home is ready to help you honor your culture as you honor your deceased loved one. Here is an overview of how different cultures approach death and some of the customs they follow:


    Within the Jewish community, death is viewed as a normal part of life. Tradition dictates that burial take place within 24 hours of death, though in modern times, exceptions are sometimes made. After the burial and funeral service, families sit Shiva. Shiva is a seven-day period of mourning. Immediate family members are required to sit Shiva. Other close friends and family members may occasionally take part. During the seven days of Shiva, people who knew the deceased visit the family to pay their respects.


    Buddhists believe that the deceased will return to life in a new form and emphasize respect for the deceased’s body. People who are in mourning wear white or black, though some Buddhist communities have their own customs for clothing. There is no set time required for mourning. Most Buddhists have minimalist lifestyles and usually choose burials and funerals that honor that tradition.


    The Irish prefer to celebrate life than dwell on death. Irish funerals and burials are usually religious in nature, but one of the most important traditions happens after the funeral service. The family and friends gather together for a party to honor the life of their lost loved one. Although Irish funerals are very solemn, the following wake is almost festive in nature.

    After the loss of a friend or family member, turn to Chapel of the Chimes in Hayward for help planning a funeral that incorporates your culture’s customs. We provide a full range of memorial, burial, and cremation services. When you need us, call (866) 475-9407.

    The Brookside Cremation Garden

    Last updated 8 months ago

    At Chapel of the Chimes, we are proud to offer families the opportunity to create truly unique tributes to their deceased loved ones. These tributes don’t end at the funeral service. Our beautiful grounds provide the ideal place to visit a lost friend or family member time and again.  We’re pleased to now offer more choices than ever with the launch of our Brookside Cremation Garden.

    In the Brookside Cremation Garden, families have a range of memorial options, including pedestals, benches, niches, and ground tablets. Families are encouraged to incorporate special characteristics about their loved ones into whatever memorial they choose. Each of the monument options can hold one or more urns, or if you wish, they can function as a traditional burial marker.

    To find out more about the Brookside Cremation Garden, contact Chapel of the Chimes in Hayward. We’re available to discuss all of our cremation and funeral options or to offer advice on how you can pre-plan your own funeral, saving your family from the financial and emotional burden. Call us today at (866) 475-9407. 

    A Brief Introduction to Funeral Etiquette

    Last updated 9 months ago

    If you have questions about how to behave or what to say at a funeral, you’re not alone. Many people go for long periods without attending a funeral, so questions about what to expect are normal. When you’re unsure about how to approach a funeral service, contact the funeral home. They will be able to explain what to expect. This advice will also help you better understand funeral etiquette:


    Black and dark-colored clothing are traditional for funerals, but they are no longer the only acceptable things to wear. In some cases, families may request that guests dress in a way that honors their deceased loved one. If you’re not sure how to dress, remember that this is a solemn occasion and that choosing a conservative outfit is best. Opt for business or church clothes, like a suit or dress. Keep in mind that makeup and hair should also be toned down.


    As a general rule of thumb, seating is distributed according the nature of the relationship with the deceased. If you are paying respects to a co-worker or acquaintance, stick to the back of the room. In some cases, there will be an usher at the funeral to assist you in finding the right seat. If you’re feeling unsure about where to sit, it is best to err on the side of caution and sit towards the back, unless you are told otherwise.


    At the end of a funeral, the guests leave the room in reverse order, with those in the front following behind the casket and the rest of the seats emptying front to back. So if you are in the back of the room, you will leave last. Family of the deceased will usually remain in front of the ceremony site to thank people for attending. If there is a burial service afterwards, funeral attendees are welcome to go, unless the family has asked that it be private. However, funeral attendees are not obligated to go to the burial service.

    Chapel of the Chimes in Hayward is here to ensure that all memorial services run smoothly. Contact us with questions or to find out how we can help you with funeral planning by calling (866) 475-9407. 

    Finding the Right Flowers for a Grieving Loved One

    Last updated 9 months ago

    Giving flowers is a considerate way to show support to a grieving loved one and that you’re keeping him or her in your thoughts. Traditionally, certain flowers and arrangements are given in sympathy. The rules are relaxing on these guidelines, but it can be helpful to know some of the customs associated with sympathy flowers and funeral flowers. Here are some tips for selecting the perfect floral arrangement:

    Ensure Flowers Are Welcome

    Although flowers are customary gifts for a grieving loved one, they are not always the right choice. In some cases, families prefer that a donation to a charity be made in lieu of a gift of flowers. You can find this information in the obituary or by calling the funeral home. Flowers are also not appropriate for Jewish families sitting Shiva. For Shiva, send desserts or baskets of kosher food instead.

    Understand Sympathy Flowers vs. Funeral Flowers

    To select the right flowers, start by deciding if you wish to send sympathy flowers or funeral flowers. Sympathy flowers are sent to the home of the bereaved and tend to be small bouquets, centerpieces, or arrangements. Funeral flowers are sent directly to the funeral home to be displayed at any visitation or memorial service held. Funeral flowers tend to be much larger wreaths and arrangements. They may also incorporate a tribute to the deceased, such as a sash that reads, “Beloved Friend.”

    Choose Appropriate Flowers

    Lilies and roses are often incorporated into sympathy and funeral flower arrangements. However, it is acceptable to choose other flowers, particularly if the deceased has a favorite type. Note that sympathy flowers don’t have to be solemn colors. Bright, spring colors can suggest a sense of renewal and hope.

    Chapel of the Chimes in Hayward is here to help you choose the proper floral tribute to present to a lost loved one. You can even order flowers and other sympathy gifts directly from our online store. To learn more about all our funeral home services, please call (866) 475-9407.  

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