Choosing Between Burial and Cremation
To understand the cremation services offered in Phoenix, AZ, you need to understand the differences between burial and cremation. The final disposition of your body after you die is one of the end of life choices that you should make before you die.
End of life choices include setting up legal documents like powers of attorney for medical and financial oversight and talking over your funeral plans with your family to let them know what you want after you die.
You can give your family a priceless gift by taking care of these things, because it will reduce additional stress for them when you die because they already know what your funeral wishes are.
Cremations and burials are the two most common funeral options available. Each of these funeral options is designed to remember you, to honor the life you’ve lived, and to provide comfort to your family after your death.
Burials usually consist of funeral visitations, funeral services, graveside ceremonies, and burials underground. Most visitations are held just before funeral services, while graveside ceremonies are held in the cemetery next to the plot where the deceased will be buried.
Burials will include embalming (preserving the body, as well as washing, dressing, and grooming the body) if there will be a viewing as part of the funeral visitation. However, if there will not be a viewing during the visitation, embalming may not be required. Many funeral homes have the ability to store the body at extremely cold temperatures, which delays the rate of deterioration.
In the United States, until the last 30 years or so, burials were the traditional choice for final disposition of the body. In many small and rural communities, even today, family or church cemeteries are abundant, and burials are still often preferred as the final means of disposition.
Funeral burials have their advantages. One advantage is that almost all religions accept burials as a proper method of final disposition. Underground burials in cemeteries also give families a place where they can physically go to spend time with their deceased loved one. Grave markers installed at the grave site provide a perpetual monument to the deceased loved one’s memory.
Burials also have some disadvantages. If someone dies and they don’t already have a church or family cemetery where burial plots are free to members, or they are not eligible to be buried in a national cemetery, then their family will have to purchase a cemetery plot.
A second disadvantage of burials is that they are permanent and in one location. Because of that, if family members who live far away from the cemetery want to visit their deceased loved one, they have to spend money and time to go see them.
If the family of the deceased loved one moves to another location and decides they want to move the grave site (this can be done) it can be extremely expensive and complicated to do so.
Cremations can be direct (without a funeral service, with the option of holding a memorial service at a later time). Cremations can also be done with a visitation (with or without a viewing) and a funeral service, with the cremation taking place after the funeral service.
Family members have many options for using their loved one’s cremation remains. They can have them buried underground (in a cemetery, for example, where other family members are already buried), stored in an urn in a columbarium niche, buried in a the urn garden of a cemetery, or put into wearable jewelry that enables them to keep a part of their loved one close to them at all times.
For more information about cremation services offered in Phoenix, AZ, including grief resources, our caring and knowledgeable staff at Simply Cremations & Funeral Arrangements is here to assist you.