A funeral is an opportunity to say farewell to a loved one and it is a time when extended family come together to recall, to laugh, to cry together and to swap tales of how the deceased impacted on their lives.
When speaking to families before the Funeral Ceremony, I am often asked ‘can we take photos?’ I believe if the family is asking this question they would like to have a record of who is attending, especially of those family members who they don’t often see (for whatever reason), or what the flowers on the coffin looked like, what the symbols on the coffin looked like, or as a memento to send to those family members who, for various reasons, could not attend. All very valid reasons and all meaningful to the family – and the family are those who are most important to us, as the Celebrant.
Most Funeral Chapels have the facility to video the service and this can be great if someone is absent as a video can easily be sent or if later the family wish to hear the Tributes paid. There are photographers who specialise in photographing funerals or making videos of funerals for the families. Google is a great resource for sourcing someone in your area; or ask the Funeral Director as most photographers who wish to do this work would have left contact details with them. Most offer a custom-designed Remembrance Book of photos that will take its place alongside other precious family memory books.
If no photographer is present and you have a coffin that is surrounded with symbols that honour the deceased, or when you are talking to the family gently suggest that they may like to take a photo – there is always a mobile phone in easy reach.
Do we….or don’t we…… ask the family, it is their decision.