Monthly Archives: August 2019

cremation services offered in Beltsville, MD

A Look at Current Funeral Trends

Among the cremation services offered in Beltsville, MD are some of the newest trends in funerals. The funeral industry, as a whole, is undergoing epic changes.

People are dying as they always have, but they are taking more control over how their lives end. More people, facing certain death with terminal illnesses such as cancer or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), are choosing to die at home. They are bringing in palliative and hospice care at the appropriate times, but they do not want to die in a facility or in the hospital.

Although the essential elements of grief over the death of a loved one will never change, the way some people are translating or processing that grief is changing. There are new ways and avenues available to remember a loved one.

One of the current funeral trends is cremation jewelry and cremation art. Although cremation jewelry has been around for centuries, it has really become popular as a way to have a loved one close by at all times. A small portion of the cremation remains are placed into a locket, which can be worn on a necklace, a ring, a broach or any other type of jewelry. The jewelry can then be worn at all times so that the deceased loved one is always with the family members.

Additionally, cremation remains are also becoming a popular art medium. One of the current trends is for tattoo artists to mix some of the cremains with the inks that they are going to use for a tattoo. The tattoo may be one that memorializes a loved one or it may just be a tattoo that reminds the person who’s getting it of their deceased loved one. Another current trend is to use cremation remains with paint and create a painting, either a picture of a loved one or picture of something else, using the paint mixture.

Both of these trends show a desire on the part of the family members who were left to have their loved ones with them in a more personal way than just sticking an urn upon the mantle in the living room.

Another current funeral trend is that as cemeteries run out of space horizontally, they are contemplating going vertical. Much like the concept of columbariums, some cemeteries are considering building structures up to hold caskets. One such structure has already been built in the crowded city of Singapore. Named Nirvana, the structure contains red carpeted VIP rooms, and curved walls painted in comforting colored swirls. It has 40,000 niches that can hold caskets. The bottom floor has a café for visitors to frequent before or after they visit their deceased loved one.

Two other funeral trends that are currently gaining traction are green burials and pod burials. Green burials feature the deceased being buried in a container that is completely biodegradable. Some cemeteries are starting to add green burial spaces to their cemeteries.

Pod burials are a type of green burial. The pods are organic and biodegradable, which allows the body to naturally decompose, releasing the nutrients that nourish new life like plants and trees.

Another current funeral trend is toward expanding available products for pet cremations. With the explosion of pet care products, veterinary services, and pet care apps, it’s clear that we Americans love our pets. They become like family members, and losing one or having to put one to sleep can break our hearts. However, whether we choose to bury them or have them cremated, there are many products out in the marketplace that allow us to do it in style.

If you want more information about cremation services offered in Beltsville, MD, you can talk with our expert staff at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can drop by our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can contact us today at (301) 937-1707.

funeral homes in Beltsville, MD

How Funeral Traditions Link Us to Our Past

With funeral traditions at funeral homes in Beltsville, MD, there are links to our past and there is a familiarity that is warm and supportive, which is exactly what a bereaved family and the mourners who join them when a loved one dies needs.

While some people are eschewing funeral traditions and substituting them with alternative rites, the reality is that funeral traditions fulfill the emotional needs of both the family that is grieving and the mourners who are grieving with them. This is an important step in both the grieving process and in moving forward without somebody that you love.

The ceremony, whether it’s a funeral service or a memorial service, to honor a deceased loved one is composed of familiar words, symbols, music, and actions. It is predictable. In fact, it’s the only thing that’s predictable after someone dies. It helps us to know what to do when we don’t know what to do.

In the 1800s, English Prime Minister William Gladstone said, “Show me the manner in which the nation cares for its dead and I will measure with mathematical exactness the tender mercies of its people, the respect for the laws of the land, and their loyalty to high ideals.”

Funeral rituals care not only for the dead, but also the living. They have a rich tradition that goes centuries back and generations back, and they are the thread that connects us to those who’ve gone before us.

Some people say they don’t want a funeral or a memorial service. The reality is that the funeral service or the memorial service is less about the person who has died and more about the people they leave behind. It is an essential part of helping a bereaved family to accept the loss of the loved one and take the first step forward toward a life that won’t have that person as a part of it.

Without a funeral service, there is no closure. Funeral rituals, which include communal support, consolation, comfort, and encouragement, give a grieving family the closure they need to emotionally move forward. When those funeral rituals aren’t done, the family of the person who has died, as well as their friends and associates, is left with unfinished emotional business.

This can take years to sort out and to make peace with. This can place a heavy burden on everyone because the funeral rituals were skipped or were replaced with a substitute that did not take care of nor address the emotional needs that a grieving family has.

One of these emotional needs is to be able to say goodbye to a loved one. This practice is embedded in the funeral ritual of visitations. The family gets to spend time alone with their loved one before other mourners come through to pay their respects and to offer consolation. This time gives the family an opportunity to say goodbye. There may be tears. There may be small mementos that are placed in the casket. There may be speeches from the heart, not said were not able to be said when the loved one was alive, but said now as part of the goodbyes.

If you’d like to know more about funeral traditions at funeral homes in Beltsville, MD, you can talk with our knowledgeable team at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can visit our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can call us today at (301) 937-1707.

cremation services offered in Burtonsville, MD

The Fall and Rise of Cremations

Cremation is one of cremation services offered in Burtonsville, MD. in the ancient world, except for Egypt (where the deceased were embalmed and entombed), China (where the dead were buried in the ground), and Judea (where the deceased were buried in sepulchers), cremation was extensively used for funerals.

The primary reasons that cremation were used included making sure that the body wasn’t desecrated by animals or other humans – ground burial consisted of digging a shallow hole, putting the body directly in the hole, and covering it with dirt – and to prevent the spread of highly-infectious diseases like bubonic plague. In times of war, cremation enabled armies to take their fallen soldiers home for proper funeral rites.

The Roman Empire used cremation exclusively until the end of the fourth century. As Christianity was adopted by the Empire, earth burials became more common. This was, in part, because cremations were associated with pagan rituals. It was also because of the belief that the body could not be resurrected if it was cremated, as if God somehow, despite creating the entire universe from nothing, didn’t have power to resurrect someone who’d been cremated.

Cremation came back onto the scene in the middle 1800s. This was because physicians realized that diseases could be spread by bodies just buried in the ground, while cremation ensured that any potential spreading of diseases was eliminated.

In England, Queen Victoria’s surgeon, Sir Henry Thompson, endorsed cremation as a sanitary means of disposing the bodies of people who had died. With acceptance in the highest levels of English society, the Cremation Society of England was formed in 1874. The first crematorium in England was finished in 1879. However, it was not used until 1885, when the English courts finally made cremation legal. Despite the fact that cremation was now legal in Great Britain, only three cremations were done in 1885.

In America, the first crematorium was also built in the middle of the 19th century. Americans were skeptical about cremation, considering it a radical idea. Like England, cremation came to America because of the fear of desecration of bodies and of the spread of highly contagious diseases. Even in the middle 1800s, many bodies were buried without caskets, so the concerns about desecration and the spread of disease were valid.

Advocates of cremation in America also saw the practice as a solution to burgeoning cities running out of cemetery space. Cemeteries in America were originally located miles from populated areas. This was in an effort to contain the spread of diseases and to keep water sources pure from decomposing bodies.

As the country grew, bigger cities spread outward until cemeteries were right across the street or next door to business and residential structures. Cremation advocates suggested that making cemeteries smaller and putting more distance between the living and the dead could free up prime real estate for more growth and keep the public health safe.

It wasn’t until the early 20th century, though, that cremations were done more regularly in the United States. Still most Americans chose ground burial over cremation. Even though cremations were done more often, they still had a stigma attached to them. Additionally, because most cremations were direct, without any kind of service to honor the dead and to comfort the family, the grieving family and other mourners didn’t get to participate in traditional funeral rituals.

If you want more information about the cremation services offered in Burtonsville, MD, you can talk with our expert staff at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can drop by our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can contact us today at (301) 937-1707.

funeral homes in Burtonsville, MD

Funeral Faux Pas to Avoid

Faux paus happen at funerals at funeral homes in Burtonsville, MD more often than you might think. It’s not that people are intentionally committing them. Instead, they simply don’t understand what is acceptable and unacceptable at funerals.

There are unspoken rules about conduct and dress at funerals. These are in place as a way to show respect to the deceased and to the grieving family. Though you probably won’t be called out for making one of these unintentional errors, it can be embarrassing, seemingly disrespectful, and hurtful to the bereaved family.

One thing that’s considered a faux pas when attending a funeral is to take pictures of the grieving family or their loved one who has died. With the advent of social media, taking pictures at any event is almost second nature.

However, a funeral is the one place where no pictures should be taken. This can be challenging, because funerals often bring together family members who are seldom in one place at the same time. If you choose to take photos, they should be somewhere other than the location of the funeral service. Preferably, family members should arrange to meet somewhere else if everyone wants family pictures taken.

Under no circumstances should you take pictures of the deceased. Although many funerals are recorded or live streamed with an open casket during the funeral service, it is still considered disrespectful to take pictures of someone who is died.

Using a cell phone during the funeral service is another faux pas. While we’re attached to our smartphones seemingly all the time, we should put them aside out of respect for the deceased and the bereaved family while we’re at a funeral service. There is no phone call, text message, or social media post that can’t wait for about an hour.

The optimal thing to do is to leave your cell phone in the car. That way you won’t be tempted to answer a call, answer a text, or post messages on social media. However, because cell phones have become a necessary accessory, if you do bring it into the funeral home, you should put it on vibrate so that it doesn’t ring or ding during the service.

A third faux pas at funerals is wearing bright or sexy clothing. Black is the traditional color that is worn at funerals. If you don’t have anything black, then gray, navy, or dark brown clothing is acceptable.

A funeral is a somber occasion, and wearing bright clothing suggests that the funeral is a casual event to you and that you don’t have respect for the mourning that the family of the deceased is experiencing. Additionally, bright clothing takes the focus off the family and puts it on you, which is also considered disrespectful.

Clothing should be modest because you do not want to draw attention away from the grieving family to yourself. Sleeveless dresses or blouses should be covered by a sweater or jacket. Clothing should not be form-fitting, nor should it be suggestive. Ladies should wear flat shoes without open toes.

However, if you’re attending a funeral where the deceased has a different cultural tradition than that in most American funerals, you should talk with the family member to find out what is appropriate to wear.

If you’d like to know more about funeral etiquette at funeral homes in Burtonsville, MD, you can talk with our knowledgeable team at Donald V. Borgwardt Funeral Home, P.A. You can visit our funeral home at 4400 Powder Mill Rd., Beltsville, MD, 20705, or you can call us today at (301) 937-1707.