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I'm a sixth generation funeral director. I have a grad degree in Missional Theology and a Certification in Thanatology.
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Posts by Caleb Wilde
Today’s guest post is written by Barbara Kemmis, the executive director of the Cremation Association of North America located in Wheeling, Illinois.
One morning, my dad called me at work, which was a first. I was immediately concerned that bad news was coming, however it turned out my parents had made a resolution to “get their affairs in order.” They were starting the process of prearranging their funerals and updating all of their end-of-life documents. My dad’s plan was to have everything in order before I visited in a couple of months. My dad was calling to confirm that the funeral home he had chosen – Resthaven Funeral Homes – was a CANA member.
We get these calls and web inquiries all the time and it got me thinking: What does a CANA-certified crematory mean to the consumer? The funeral home my parents chose is well respected in the community and is a CANA member that proudly displays the CANA logo on its website and front door. The crematory operators are all CANA certified, which means they had gone to extra lengths in professional education. So I asked DeWayne Cain of Rest Haven Funeral Homes in Rockwall, Texas why he sought this designation for his business and staff, and what it means to the community he serves.
Dewayne and his staff serve hundreds of families like mine every year. Dewayne said, “CANA is considered the authority in training and certification for crematory operators. The outstanding CANA workshops, seminars and continuing education courses help my staff and me stay current on best practices for crematories. Rest Haven’s affiliation with CANA is important to me and to the families we serve, because it demonstrates our commitment to the highest standards of integrity and professionalism.”
When I visited my parents, we went to the bank and spent time reviewing documents – living wills and worksheets from the funeral home. Not surprisingly, my mom had planned a lovely funeral for herself at which her many friends from church and her social clubs, former students and others could gather together. My mom is a social creature known for her party planning. My dad’s worksheet simply stated, “Just cremate me.”
He explained that he didn’t want us to be sad or mourn him. He didn’t want a big deal made about his passing. He would be in heaven and we would see him again when it was our time. How many times have you had the same thought or a similar conversation with your friends or loved ones? My mom and I looked at each other and then looked away. I said what she couldn’t at that moment. “I love you, Dad, and I will mourn you and I will cry when you die. I need to be surrounded by family and your friends and former students. I need to hear about the practical jokes you pulled in the classroom and the stories of your leadership in the church and community. I want to respect your wishes, but I will mark your passing. I love you too much not to.”
Our conversation continues about their “affairs”, and has become much more than pre-planning a funeral. The agreement we reached is that I will honor their wishes to be cremated and the details of the ceremony and final memorialization will fall to me and other friends and family members.
Via The History Channel:
On February 14 around the year 278 A.D., Valentine, a holy priest in Rome in the days of Emperor Claudius II, was executed.
Under the rule of Claudius the Cruel, Rome was involved in many unpopular and bloody campaigns. The emperor had to maintain a strong army, but was having a difficult time getting soldiers to join his military leagues. Claudius believed that Roman men were unwilling to join the army because of their strong attachment to their wives and families.
To get rid of the problem, Claudius banned all marriages and engagements in Rome. Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret.
When Valentine’s actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death. Valentine was arrested and dragged before the Prefect of Rome, who condemned him to be beaten to death with clubs and to have his head cut off. The sentence was carried out on February 14, on or about the year 270.
Legend also has it that while in jail, St. Valentine left a farewell note for the jailer’s daughter, who had become his friend, and signed it “From Your Valentine.”
For his great service, Valentine was named a saint after his death.
To read more click HERE.
This is an R-rated death tale. You’ve been forewarn.
As his suppression had become a political necessity, Dózsa was routed at Temesvár (today Timişoara) by an army of 20,000 led by John Zápolya and István Báthory. He was captured after the battle, and condemned to sit on a heated smoldering iron throne with a heated iron crown on his head and a heated sceptre in his hand (mocking at his ambition to be king). While he was suffering in this way, a procession of nine fellow rebels, who had been starved beforehand, were led to this throne. In the lead was Dózsa’s younger brother, Gergely, who was cut in three before Dózsa despite Dózsa asking for Gergely to be spared. Next, executioners removed hot pliers from fire and forced them into Dózsa’s skin. After pulling flesh from him, the remaining rebels were ordered to bite where the hot iron had been inserted and to swallow the flesh. Those who refused, about three or four, were simply cut up which prompted the remaining rebels to do as commanded. In the end, Dózsa died on the throne of iron from the damage that was inflicted while the rebels who obeyed were let go without further harm.