Visitation or Gathering
Prior to services, there is usually a visitation period where the family can gather and receive friends. Visitations play an important role in the healing process. They allow guests to pay their respects to the family and the deceased, share memories, and show their support. The casket can be opened or closed, depending on the wishes of the deceased and the family, and memorabilia items and pictures are often displayed. Visitations can be facilitated at a church or here at the funeral home.
A service, religious or non-religious in nature, is often held here at the funeral home or church and officiated by a priest, funeral celebrant, or individual of the family's choosing. Following the service, there is typically a procession to the cemetery where burial or entombment take place. Another option is a "graveside service" which is a simple burial service held at the cemetery without a visitation period preceding it.