By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
The dark side of fun funerals
Placeholder Image
For centuries, religious believers have held solemn funeral rites that were then followed by social events that, in some cultures, could get lively.The funeral was the funeral and the wake was the wake, and people didn't confuse their traditional religious rituals with the often-festive events that followed, noted author Chad Louis Bird, a former Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod seminary professor who is best known online as a poet and hymn composer. But something strange happened in American culture the past decade or so: People started planning fun funerals."Our culture is anxious to avoid dealing with death. It seems the goal is for people to be able to keep their heads in the sand and not have to face what has happened," said Bird in a telephone interview.Thus, when it comes time to plan funerals, many people in the modern age -- including many religious believers -- have "lost that sense of the reality, the gravity of death itself," he added.