Seven Things You Should Know About Live Stream Funeral Etiquette
Losing a loved one during the era of COVID-19 is especially challenging.
While the pandemic forced the world to remain apart, virtual funeral services have allowed family members, loved ones, and supporters to come together regardless of physical distance. If you are planning to participate in a live stream funeral service, follow these seven tips to be the perfect guest.
Get prepared in advance.
You’ll need to know the date, time, and the live streaming link for the service. This information may be listed in the obituary. If it is not provided, sign up to receive a text or email notification when the details are updated. If you are attending a Facebook Live funeral event, be sure to “like” the funeral home’s Facebook page to ensure that you will receive updates. You may also want to set a reminder on your phone so you can be sure to attend on time.
Dress appropriately. You’ll want to consider your attire even when you are connecting digitally. This is particularly important if you are attending a Zoom funeral and your camera is enabled. As with any funeral, it is a sign of respect to dress conservatively and to wear neutral colors that are not distracting. Avoid loungewear, athletic gear, or other very casual garments you might typically wear around the house.
Be present during the funeral service.
Close down any social media accounts and resist the temptation to multitask during the ceremony. Show up to the virtual event as if you were attending in person and offer your undivided attention.
Join the live stream early.
Just like an in-person funeral or memorial service, punctuality is essential when attending a live streamed service. Family members won't be likely to check their phones after the ceremony begins, so join the webcast at least five minutes ahead of time so they know you are in attendance. This time cushion also gives you the opportunity to troubleshoot any technical issues you may encounter.
Let the bereaved know you are attending virtually.
A simple, "We are here with you" in the comments on the live stream can lend comfort to those who are attending in person. Don't forget to mention the names of anyone watching with you. It’s best to add your comments before the service begins so as not to be a distraction during the ceremony.
Give extra thought to your remarks.
When comments are limited to the written word as they often are in the virtual funeral setting, misinterpretations can occur. Avoid jokes and sarcastic remarks. Basic phrases such as, "I'm so sorry for your loss" or "Our thoughts and prayers are with you" are good choices for offering condolences in an online environment.
Show your support after the service is over.
Grief doesn’t end with the funeral. Call the bereaved periodically or connect with them face-to-face via Zoom, Skype, or FaceTime. You could also send emails or cards in the weeks following the funeral. Condolence gifts like food baskets, meals, or flowers and meals are also lovely ways to show your continued support and sympathy.
The presence of friends and family at a funeral service is helpful and healing.
While social distancing and other limitations may impede the ability to attend in person, our virtual services offer the next best thing. They provide an opportunity to honor the departed and offer support to the family without risking health or safety.
The caring professionals at Batchelor Brothers Funeral Services are here for you and your family. We will continue to offer innovative ways to safely and meaningfully celebrate the life of your loved one. If you have a funeral need, please contact us anytime.
About Batchelor Brothers Funeral Services: As a leading African American-owned and operated funeral and cremation organization, Batchelor Brothers Funeral Services has provided a ministry of care to thousands of grieving families. We promise to provide our highest level of distinguished service and respect to families who entrust us to honor their loved ones. In all aspects of the funeral process, we strive to be the absolute best and are honored to help preserve our clients’ legacies for future generations. With two convenient locations serving North and West Philadelphia, it is always our pleasure to be of service. Please visit our website for more information.