Obituaries

Angela Qualle
B: 1964-11-24
D: 2017-06-21
View Details
Qualle, Angela
Gerald Franceen
B: 1933-06-16
D: 2017-06-18
View Details
Franceen, Gerald
William Nowicki
B: 1953-03-06
D: 2017-06-18
View Details
Nowicki, William
Bernice Hoekstra
B: 1919-04-28
D: 2017-06-08
View Details
Hoekstra, Bernice
Alice Becht
B: 1933-06-04
D: 2017-06-07
View Details
Becht, Alice
Jerome Brelje
B: 1957-01-15
D: 2017-06-06
View Details
Brelje, Jerome
Shirley Dahm
B: 1925-06-21
D: 2017-06-05
View Details
Dahm, Shirley
Adelia Miller
B: 1920-05-14
D: 2017-06-03
View Details
Miller, Adelia
Janice Preble
B: 1942-08-13
D: 2017-05-26
View Details
Preble, Janice
Ronald Fjerstad
B: 1947-11-12
D: 2017-05-17
View Details
Fjerstad, Ronald
Eldon Keehr
B: 1929-10-10
D: 2017-05-16
View Details
Keehr, Eldon
Tony Onischuk
B: 1924-11-25
D: 2017-05-11
View Details
Onischuk, Tony
James Albrecht
B: 1980-01-25
D: 2017-05-07
View Details
Albrecht, James
Alexander Dunlop
B: 1932-02-23
D: 2017-05-02
View Details
Dunlop, Alexander
Vera Kopp
B: 1936-10-21
D: 2017-04-29
View Details
Kopp, Vera
Doreen Hulse
B: 1932-03-29
D: 2017-04-25
View Details
Hulse, Doreen
Eleanor Stephens
B: 1923-02-28
D: 2017-04-20
View Details
Stephens, Eleanor
Franklin Funes
B: 1933-03-30
D: 2017-04-19
View Details
Funes, Franklin
Myles Voracek
B: 1930-08-14
D: 2017-04-14
View Details
Voracek, Myles
Janis Maas
B: 1955-03-06
D: 2017-04-12
View Details
Maas, Janis
Doris Henry
B: 1936-07-10
D: 2017-04-09
View Details
Henry, Doris

Search

Use the form above to find your loved one. You can search using the name of your loved one, or any family name for current or past services entrusted to our firm.

Click here to view all obituaries
Search Obituaries
140 8th Avenue North
South St. Paul, MN 55075
Phone: 651-455-5352
Fax: 651-455-8255

Funerals vs. Celebrations of Life

It's interesting; funerals and celebrations-of-life have much in common, yet they often appear very different. Each is a ceremony; a gathering of people who share a common loss. It's just that one is more rooted in tradition, while the other is the result of recent changes in social values. But both serve to do three things:

1. Help the bereaved family, and their community, publically acknowledge the death of one of their own.

2. Support the grieving family by surrounding them with caring friends, co-workers, and neighbors.

3. Move the deceased from one social status to another.

Yet they achieve those things in very different ways. First, let's take a closer look at what most of us commonly see as very traditional funerals.

The Funeral

It's not surprising funerals have been around for a very long time. Composed of three activities, the visitation, the funeral service, and the committal service, performed at the graveside; this funeral is the one we'd easily recognize from contemporary literature and film.

The Visitation: Held prior to the funeral, often the night before but sometimes on the same day, the visitation (or viewing) is a time when people come to support the family and, more importantly, pay their respects to the deceased. This often involves stepping up to the casket to view the body; either in the company of a member of the surviving family or on your own.

The Funeral Service: Commonly held in the funeral home or church, the traditional funeral service is led by an officiant of one kind or another; most commonly a pastor or the funeral director. This individual follows a very predictable funeral order of service which includes the singing of hymns; and invocations, Bible recitations, Scripture readings, and prayers led by the officiant.

The Committal Service: This takes place at the cemetery, after a slow and respectful automobile procession from the place where the funeral was held. The committal service ends when the casketed remains are lowered into the ground, and final prayers are said.

If you'd like to know more about the history of funerals in the United States, you may like to visit the website of the National Museum of Funeral History. But for now, it's enough to know that a funeral service traditionally has these three distinct components. Now let's look at a celebration-of-life service.

Celebrations-of-Life

Author Barbara Kingsolver, in her book The Poisonwood Bible, wrote “To live is to be marked. To live is to change, to acquire the words of a story, and that is the only celebration we mortals really know.” We think this reflection is at the heart of a celebration-of-life. While a funeral, as we've described it above, has more to do with the orderly and often spiritually-defined; a celebration-of-life is more concerned with telling the story of the deceased. Celebrations-of-life are just that: a time people come together more to celebrate the unique personality and achievements of the deceased than to merely witness or mark the change in their social status.

Celebrations-of-life are similar to memorial services, which can be described as a hybrid event; combining the flexibility of a celebration-of-life with many of the activities of a traditional funeral order-of-service.

There's more room for creativity in a celebration-of-life than a funeral. Since celebrations-of-life are commonly held after the individual's physical remains have been cared for through burial or cremation; there is much more time available to plan the event. And without doubt, this allows you to make better decisions about how you'd like to celebrate the life of someone you dearly loved.

Are You Undecided? Turn to Us

We've got years of experience listening, brainstorming, and advising families how they can best pay tribute to a beloved family member. That means we're the perfect people to help you decide between a funeral and a celebration-of -life. We'll explore your funeral service options with you in detail, taking all the time you need.

In the book Chocolat, by Joanne Harris, you'll find this fundamental truth: “Life is what you celebrate. All of it. Even its end.”  As funeral professionals we help families express reverence for life. Let us do that for your family. Call our funeral home at 651-455-5352 to speak with a member of our staff.

Sources:
Barbara KingsoloverThe Poisonwood Bible
Joanne Harris, Chocolat