Traditional Burial Services
Traditionally, a burial service involves a visitation, followed by a funeral service in a church, or other place of worship. The casket is typically present at both these events, and it is your decision on whether to have the casket open or not. You have the option of having the remains interred (earth burial), or it may be entombed in a crypt inside a mausoleum (above ground burial). Family or religious traditions are often a factor for choosing burial. Decisions need to be made like, what kind of casket to use, what cemetery to use and what to put on the gravestone.
A monumental cemetery is the traditional style of cemetery where headstones or other monuments made of marble or granite rise vertically above the ground. There are countless different types of designs for headstones, ranging from very simple to large and complex.
A lawn cemetery is where each grave is marked with a small commemorative plaque that is placed horizontally at the head of the grave at ground-level. Families can still be involved in the design and the information contained on the plaque, however in most cases the plaques are a standard design.
A mausoleum is an external free-standing building constructed as a monument enclosing the interment space or burial chamber of a deceased person or people. A mausoleum may be considered a type of tomb or the tomb may be considered to be within the mausoleum. The most famous mausoleum is the Taj Mahal in India.
Columbarium walls are generally reserved for cremated remains. While cremated remains can be kept at home by families or scattered somewhere significant to the deceased, a columbarium provides friends and family a place to come and visit. Columbarium walls do not take up a lot of space and it is a less expensive alternative to a burial plot.
Natural cemeteries, also known as eco-cemeteries, natural or green cemeteries is a new style of cemetery set aside for natural burials. Natural burials are motivated by the desire to be environmentally conscience, although natural burials can be performed at any type of cemetery, they are usually done in a natural woodland area. Conventional markings such as headstones are generally replaced with a tree, wildflowers, bush or a placement of a natural rock.
Typically, the opening and closing fee includes administration and permanent record keeping such as determining ownership, obtaining permission and the completion of other documentation which may be required, entering the interment particulars in the interment register, maintaining all legal files.
The opening and closing of the grave also includes; (locating the grave and laying out the boundaries, excavating and filling the interment space); installation and removal of the lowering device; placement and removal of artificial grass dressing and coco-matting at the grave site, leveling, tamping, re-grading and sodding the grave site, leveling and re-sodding the grave if the earth settles.
To remember and to be remembered are natural human needs. A permanent memorial in a cemetery provides a focal point for remembrance and memorializing the deceased. Throughout human history, memorialization of the dead has been a key component of almost every culture. Psychologists say that remembrance practices, from the funeral or memorial service to permanent memorialization, serve an important emotional function for survivors by helping them bring closure and allowing the healing process to begin. Providing a permanent resting place for the deceased is a dignified treatment for a loved one’s remains, which fulfills the natural human desire for memorialization.
When a cemetery runs out of land, it will continue to operate and serve the community. When we get to this point, the percentage of cremation would likely become the main method of disposition. Depending on cemetery by-laws, most cemeteries will allow for multiple urns to be interred on top of an existing grave.
We think of cemetery lands as being in perpetuity. There are cemeteries throughout the world that have been in existence for hundreds of years.
Besides ground burial, some cemeteries offer interment in lawn crypts or entombment in mausoleums. In addition, most cemeteries provide choices for those who have selected cremation. These often include placement of cremated remains in a niche of a columbarium or interment in an urn space.
These are the outside containers into which the casket is placed. Burial vaults are designed to protect the casket and may be made of a variety or combination of materials including concrete, stainless steel, galvanized steel, copper, bronze, plastic or fiberglass. A grave liner is a lightweight version of a vault which simply keeps the grave surface from sinking in.
There is no law that states a specific time from for burial. Considerations that will affect timeline include the need to secure all permits and authorizations, notification of family and friends, preparation of cemetery site and maybe religious considerations. Contact your local funeral provider for more details.
No. Embalming is a choice which may depend on factors like if there is to be an open casket viewing of the body or if there is to be an extended time between death and interment. Public health laws may require embalming if the body is going to be transported by air and into another country.
In Ontario, this is generally not mandatory. Most active cemeteries have by-laws and regulations that suggest the use of a basic grave liner for maintenance and safety purposes. Either a grave liner or a burial vault will satisfy these requirements.