'What is a Natural Burial and what type of funeral can I have at a Natural Burial Ground?' These are just a few of the questions we have been asked in the past and wanted to help clarify with our blog below. If you have a question we haven't answered just let us know in the comments.
A funeral is an opportunity to celebrate a person's life whilst also coming to terms with the person’s departure. The entire service can be held at the natural burial ground and you can celebrate with songs, music, poetry, an open-air picnic; wear bright colours or a favourite team's strip; decorate the coffin yourselves; take favourite things - the dog, or even the horse; release doves, let yourself be creative and individual. Take as long as you need.
A natural burial can also be the final part of a traditional funeral after a religious service held at a church, chapel, temple or mosque with a group of family and friends coming to the committal at the natural burial ground. You may wish to have a non religious or celebrant service at the family home followed by a committal, or even have a simple committal first followed by a memorial service at the venue that your having the wake.
There are no rules - natural burial grounds offer a blank canvas upon which you can design your own style of funeral. Whether a simple natural burial where the service and burial take place at the graveside in the meadow, a close family gathering for the interment of ashes after a direct cremation or a committal ceremony after a more traditional religious service at a church or chapel.
You don’t have to follow any set format. If you want something in particular, like a New Orleans jazz band dressed in purple, a piper, a picnic or wake in the meadow after the burial in a marquee, or have your own special idea then funeral directors and celebrants are very resourceful and should be able to help you arrange whatever you want with our burial grounds. If you are arranging your own DIY funeral then you can also contact us directly so we can work with you to arrange your ideal send off.
Sometimes, so much freedom can be daunting, especially at such a difficult time, so it is useful to hear about funerals that others have arranged before which have worked well. The personal touches that counted for a lot, the way they strayed from the normal way of doing things to make it special. We have a collection of inspiring stories from families who have done their own thing at the natural burial grounds, which provide some great ideas.
Ministers, celebrants and humanists can provide a framework for the event. Someone to lead the service, to speak out and invite contributions and then to formally say farewell, giving leave to depart, which is usually the hardest thing to do. This help can often put people at ease and they will also guide you to plan what is said, who will speak, the choice of music, and identify opportunities for children to be included. A minister, humanist or celebrant will take on this role. Alternatively, a close family member who is capable of performing such a role might come forward at the right time.
If you have any questions about natural burials and want to find our more then you are more than welcome to get in touch, give us a call or have a look at our website .
Stories and thoughts from the Leedam camp.
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