• Honoring Deceased Veterans on Memorial Day

    Cemetery San Mateo

    For many families, Memorial Day is just another three-day weekend that provides a good excuse to dust off the BBQ set. But for families of deceased veterans, it’s a poignant day marked by equal parts pride and sorrow. It’s a time to revisit the funeral home or memorial park to pay your respects and reflect on the decedent’s life of sacrifice.

    Gravesite Visits
    On Memorial Day, it’s customary for families of deceased veterans to visit the memorial park where their loved one is buried. The family may wish to offer prayers at the gravesite or share their favorite memories of their loved one. Placing flowers is a thoughtful gesture and planting small American flags is a tradition, but it’s always wise to check with the funeral home first. Some cemeteries have policies about the placement of personal items. After a somber visit to the gravesite, some people find it difficult to adjust back to everyday life. Consider taking the family to a group activity that the deceased loved one would have enjoyed. If the veteran was an avid golfer, perhaps the family could go to a mini golf course to honor his or her memory.

    National Moment of Remembrance
    The National Moment of Remembrance takes place every Memorial Day at 3 p.m. local time. Take one minute to pause from daily activities and reflect on the sacrifice of veterans.

    American Flag
    The American flag is a familiar sight at homes across the country. On Memorial Day, custom dictates that the flag ought to be flown at half-staff from morning until noon. From noon until sunset, the flag ought to be flown at full-staff.

    Community Involvement
    Another way to honor deceased veterans on Memorial Day is to spend some time in service to living veterans. There are many non-profit organizations dedicated to helping veterans and their families. Find one that is most meaningful to you and volunteer your time or make a charitable donation in memory of your loved one.

    Skylawn Memorial Park is honored to serve veterans and their families. We invite families to visit our beautiful, serene memorial park in San Mateo this Memorial Day to honor their loved ones. You can contact our funeral home at (650) 349-4411 if you have any questions about laying flowers or personal items.

  • Explaining Cremation to Your Child

    Funeral Home San Mateo

    Cremation services are frequently chosen by at-need and pre-need funeral planners. If your child is grieving a deceased loved one and the family has chosen cremation services, your child may have some questions about what this means. As with other topics concerning loss, it’s best to let the child guide the conversation. Only share as much information as your child wants, but do encourage him or her to openly express curiosity.

    Using language that is appropriate for your child’s maturity level, you can explain that cremation is the process of burning a body to reduce it to ashes. Be sure that you emphasize that the decedent is no longer present within the body. Otherwise, a young child may become frightened. Similarly, young children may become confused or frightened with the use of euphemisms, rather than plain, simple language.

    You’ll find respectful cremation services in San Mateo at Skylawn Memorial Park. When you’re ready to arrange a funeral, you can call us at (650) 349-4411.

  • Islamic Beliefs About Death and Mourning

    Cemetery San Mateo

    In a time of loss, funeral ceremony customs and traditions can be a comfort for the mourners. As with all religions, not all Muslims hold the same views or follow the exact same practices. However, the main elements of Islamic funeral services tend to be consistent across different cultures.

    Imminent Death
    When a Muslim is gravely ill or injured and is thought to be approaching death, his or her loved ones are encouraged to be present to offer comfort. The family may encourage the dying person to recite the shahada . As soon as the death has occurred, the family recites, ” Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’un .” The decedent’s eyes are closed and the body is covered by a clean sheet.

    Organ Donation
    Imams generally agree that Islam allows organ donation. This is due to a line in the Qu’ran that reads, “Whosoever saves the life of one person it would be as if he saved the life of all mankind.”

    It is customary for Muslim families to refuse routine autopsies, as these are perceived as desecrating the body. Similarly, embalming is refused unless it is required by federal or state law. Cosmetology services are also typically refused.

    Cremation is strictly forbidden in Islam. It is ” haram ,” which means an unclean practice. Not only are Muslims prohibited from being cremated, they are prohibited from witnessing cremation or voicing positive opinions about it. These strict beliefs about cremation are due to the following tenets of Islam:

    • The dead must receive the same respect as those who are still living.
    • The dead are a reminder that death, as a natural conclusion to life, is not to be feared.
    • Allah resurrects the body from the tailbone, and cremation would destroy the tailbone.
    • A human cannot truly know what happens after death.

    The only exception to cremation is if it is necessary to prevent the spread of diseases and an imam gives permission.

    Funeral Services

    After the body is ceremoniously washed and shrouded by the family, the body is taken to the mosque for the funeral prayers. Then, the body is taken to the memorial park for the burial. Because of the prohibition on embalming, there is no visitation and burial must take place as soon as possible.

    At Skylawn Memorial Park, we are highly sensitive to the importance of cultural and religious traditions. Contact our funeral home in San Mateo to discuss our burial services, which include pre-need arrangements. You can reach us at (650) 349-4411.