Guide to Conduct and...

Dictionary

Guide to Conduct and Ceremony

Part 2. Formalities concerning Family Affairs

Chapter 6. Funerary Rites

Section 3. Taking Care of Funeral Affairs

1. In order to take care of and deal with matters from beginning to end on the occasion of a death and the propriety of a funeral, it requires a funeral management office with experienced members among the friends and relatives who are appointed as the funeral committee and staff. The tasks involved in completing the funeral arrangement―home affairs, external affairs, receiving guests, rites, funeral equipment, burial procedures, accounting, etc.―should be shared. One should keep records of condolence money, the guest book and the diary of the period of mourning, lest the bereaved family forget in the future.
2. A notification of the person's death needs to be sent to closely associated persons among the relatives and acquaintances. Offering condolences should be done in person. However, if one is far away and unable to participate in person, one must immediately send a telegram or message of condolence to comfort the bereaved family members.
3. A person should choose the appropriate expression of condolences in a obituary notice or personal letter according to whether that person is a new or old acquaintance of the family. It should be proper and not wanting in courtesy.
4. Relatives or close acquaintances may choose to offer, according to their individual economic situation, either a donation or a gift to the bereaved family.
5. It is probably better to discard such old customs as building a fire to stay up all night in the garden at the house of the bereaved. However, lamps or candles should be lit around the house.
6. Some of the old customs of the bereaved family such as letting down the hair, slinging clothes over the shoulder and across the breast or removing the shoes and socks, could be discarded.
7. Whether the funeral is conducted by the Order or is a public one, the proper steps must always be followed from beginning to end under the direction of the funeral committee.