When a loved one dies, the kind of memorial service you choose to have for them is incredibly important in honorably commemorating their life and legacy. In recent years, cremation has become a popular choice of memorial service amongst families in the U.S. In fact according to a 2017 report by the Cremation Association of North America, for the first time ever more Americans are choosing cremation ver traditional methods of burial to pay tribute to their deceased loved ones.
What accounts for this growing popularity of cremation? Cremation offers a plethora of benefits that make it the smarter choice for many families on various economic, social, demographic and religious levels. We will explore those factors here so you can decide whether cremation will be the best method of memorialization for your loved one.
Cremation is considerably less costly than that of a traditional burial. This is due to the fact that it is a simpler method of commemoration that requires far less steps and processes than that of traditional burial which requires a casket, embalming, burial plot, etc. All of those individual processes greatly add up in cost. Many families enjoy the simplicity of cremation, and the ease of being able to conduct such a service without having to worry about affording and coordinating all of the other processes required for burial, during an already challenging time.
As compared to a traditional burial, cremation is a better choice for the environment, leaving a much smaller footprint and lower environmental impact. With the embalming, land, coffin or casket that a traditional burial requires, it takes up more space and uses up more resources than that of cremation.
Unlike that of a traditional burial, you have more flexibility in terms of when you can have a cremation for your loved one. There is a certain, allotted period of time in which a body can be embalmed, but no such time requirements exist for cremation.
Traditional methods of burial also have strong associations with religious ceremonies. As the U.S. becomes more secular, many people enjoy that cremation doesn’t seem to have deep religious ties like that of a casket burial, and is ultimately a much more personalized choice. There is a far greater range of options for customizability with cremated remains. Unlike in a casket burial, cremated remains can be divided between and shared amongst family members, and they can also be scattered at various sentimental locations. There are virtually endless options to commemorate your loved one’s ashes. You can even transform your loved ones’ ashes into a piece of special, memorial jewelry or other sentimental keepsakes.
In the past, it was common for generations of families to live and die together. Burying their loved ones nearby was a way to keep the family close together. However, as the U.S. population becomes increasingly mobile, families are moving further apart and it’s no longer as convenient to necessarily choose a traditional method of burial. With families living further apart, it is possible that many family members may not even be able to make the funeral in person to see their loved one’s burial ceremony. Cremation may be a much more convenient option as a loved one’s cremated remains can still be shared amongst family members who can’t physically make it to the funeral. Family members of the deceased can consequently still feel close to their loved one wherever they are in the world, as long as they have a share of the cremated remains.