Are you planning to attend a live-streamed funeral service? The number of people who want to participate in a live-streamed funeral service has significantly increased since the pandemic. Because of social restrictions at that time, most funeral homes now provide this feature, so that relatives who live far away, are ill, or are on active military service can participate.
Attending a live-streamed funeral service is one way to show your support and care for the people who are grieving. Like the typical funeral service, online funeral services also come with appropriate protocols that you must keep in mind. Learn more about the proper funeral etiquette for a virtual funeral service below.
How To Join The Online Service
If you are unable to attend the funeral services in person, you can still honor the life of the one who passed away by attending a live-stream funeral service (if there is any). Alternatively, you can also send flowers, sympathy cards, or donate in the name of your loved one.
Be aware of the specific date and time the virtual service will happen, and know the live-streaming link of the funeral service as well. You should also make it a point to check if the obituary has been published in the paper or online so you can plan ahead and be on time when you attend. Another option is asking a family member or close friend of the deceased for the details.
What to Wear: Appropriate Clothing
Although there is typically no dress code for live-stream funeral service attendees, it would be highly improper to view the funeral in your pajamas. Dressing up for the occasion shows your respect for the deceased. What you wear could also help in making you feel like you are part of the live funeral service.
Typical funeral colors like black and white are good options if there’s no specific dress code. Sometimes, the funeral organizers choose a favorite color of the deceased as the theme. Pay attention to this detail and wear what is most appropriate.
Where To Watch The Live Streaming
Find a comfortable place to watch the live-streamed funeral service. Of course, make sure the place you’re staying in has a reliable internet connection. Like some people, you can either watch the funeral service in the comforts of your home or if you would like, you can watch it in a meaningful location to both you and the person who died.
The most important thing to remember is to be mindful of the background of your setting. If the space is chaotic, clean it up. Alternatively, you can also use a virtual background to camouflage what’s behind you.
Who To Watch The Service With
Just like an in-person service, you can watch and participate in the live-stream funeral service with anyone you feel comfortable with. You don’t need to watch it alone. Attending a funeral service itself can be hard especially if the one being laid to rest is someone very close and dear to you. Having the presence of someone you feel comfortable with could give you warmth and comfort.
Be Careful With Your Comments Online
It’s important that you let the family of the one who lost a loved one know of your care when you’re attending the virtual funeral service. Typing simple words of comfort like “My thoughts and prayers are with you,” or “I am here with you” in the chatbox can help ease the pain.
These words may even be comforting to others participating online and to those who are attending the service in person. Do not forget to also mention the names of the ones watching with you if there is anyone. Even if it is a bit hard to know what to say, it is better to say something than not say anything at all.
Anticipate Potential Technical Difficulties
Be prepared for technical difficulties because you might have a poor internet connection. Maybe, the funeral home will restart the stream. You might need to call the funeral home and ask for their help. You might have to restart your device or restart your browser or your computer. These may happen to you so prepare for it and be patient. Always remember that you can log onto the stream with your phone using a smartphone or tablet and mobile data.
Be Understanding and Empathetic of Different Situations
A live-stream funeral service may not be everyone’s cup of tea. Keep in mind that those attending the live stream instead of going in person have their reasons for doing so. People need to be understanding and should not judge their decision. Those people may have other commitments and cannot travel. Some may have tight work schedules and traveling on short notice would be impossible to do. There are also those who do not have the financial capability to travel and attend in person.
Live-streamed funeral service allows both families and friends to witness and honor their deceased loved one regardless of their situation. It is very important to be understanding and to be respectful of everyone. Bear in mind that it is a very emotional time for the family who lost their loved one.
Show Support After the Funeral Services
More importantly, it is crucial to show support after the service by sending the bereaved family a heartfelt card or condolence gifts. Doing so will let them know that you are thinking of them in the weeks after the service.
You may not be able to visit in person but you can still connect with them from time to time via Zoom, Messenger, FaceTime, or any other platforms to share with them some good memories and also continuously show them your sympathy and support. Your gesture will help remind the bereaved they are not alone, and this could help them on their path to healing.