How do you honor the dead when you’re not allowed to gather?

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My mom died last weekend. It wasn’t totally unexpected, but it was still a shock when it happened. She didn’t die from Coronavirus, but the process of making arrangements with the mortuary was definitely affected by restrictions related to the pandemic.

We live in Minnesota, which, relatively speaking, hasn’t been hit hard by the virus (yet). Governor Tim Walz has a stay-at-home order in place until May 18, 2020. Obviously mortuary services are considered an “essential business”, but there are extra restrictions in place for them, namely that no more than ten people can gather at a time.

My mom didn’t want the traditional wake/viewing and funeral, and all of us that wanted to view her body prior to cremation were able to do so in a single group of less than ten. But, I wondered what other families, particularly those wanting a more traditional service, were doing during this strange time we’re living in. After a little research, I found that a lot of people are opting for a virtual funeral.

We had enjoyed a virtual Easter on Zoom, but the thought of doing a virtual funeral just seemed kind of…weird. However, doing a funeral service virtually does afford families the ability to give and receive support from their friends and relatives. …


Marna Schaub

Former social worker, wife, mother of two. I love to read and write about issues related to mental health, personal growth, and relationships.

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