It is often difficult to say something to alleviate the pain and grief from someone who is grieving over the death of a family member or loved one. In times like these, it is always important to observe proper etiquette in sending funeral flowers. You will never want to offend someone with the flowers you send. It is a good thing that the florist is here to help you pick the right type of flowers for the funerals and to guide you through proper ways of sending them. Knowing the etiquette in funeral flowers will help you order the right one confidently to send to the funeral homes.
Relationship to the Deceased Person
The first thing to consider when sending funeral flowers is a relationship to the deceased person and family.
- Immediate Family Members
Including spouse, children, parents, grandparents, and siblings, or anyone with similar relationship, immediate family members may choose to bring or send casket sprays, wreaths, or pillows. These special flower arrangements are often laid on top or at the end of the casket. Family may also place a special bouquet on the hands of the deceased.
Aside from casket sprays and special wreaths, immediate family members may also bring standing sprays to be placed near the casket. Heart-shaped cushions and pillows are also a common choice. The florist also has different posies and baskets of flowers available at the shop.
- Extended Family Members
Cousins, aunts, uncles, nephews, nieces, and grandchildren may bring various funeral flower arrangements to the funerals. They can send standing sprays, flower condolence wreath, flower baskets, and special flower bouquets to express condolences and to pay last respect and tribute to the deceased person.
- Friends, Co-workers, Business Associates, Colleagues, and Acquaintance Friends
Non-family members may send basket arrangements, wreaths, plants, and flowers in a vase to the funerals.
Faith and Religious Beliefs of the Family
Another etiquette observed in sending funeral flowers is the faith and religion or religious belief of the family receiving the flowers.
- Catholic, Christians, Protestants
Roman Catholic families and most Christians and Protestants, including Baptist and Methodist, accept all types of funeral flowers in all forms and arrangements.
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Jewish families do not accept flowers. It is very inappropriate for them to accept and give funeral flowers. They have this strong religious customary and tradition to follow when a family member dies. However, charitable donations, in cash and in-kind, are more acceptable for them. They consider donations as tribute to the deceased person.
Traditionally, the Buddhists prefer white flowers to signify mourning. White flowers can be arranged in special but appropriate design to be sent to the family to express condolences and sympathy. On the other hand, red flowers should be avoided. Red flowers are unethical and inappropriate in a funeral.
The Hindus accept almost all kinds of funeral flowers and arrangements at the funerals. Moreover, they prefer to wear flower garlands during the funerals. Funeral casket sprays and garlands are among the most common options. In addition, the Hindus also accept gifts from family and friends.
Accepting funeral flowers depend on the family’s decision. Although some of them accept funeral and sympathy flowers and some of them do not, it is still best to ask the family for their preference.
In Mormon funerals, floral arrangements are actually encouraged, especially from family and friends. However, they reject anything with a representation of the cross.
Most families appreciate the gift of flowers for sympathy and condolences. Flowers are accepted not just to sympathize but more importantly, to give honor and tribute to the deceased person and to comfort the family. Some families, however, request for special floral arrangements while some ask donations to charitable institutions in lieu of flowers.
Types of Flowers for the Funerals
Types of funeral flowers vary in colors, sizes, and designs. Although most types of flowers can be used for the purpose, choosing the right and appropriate type of flowers to send is part of the proper funeral flower etiquette.
- Lilies and Peace Lilies
This type of flower is the most popular one for the funerals. The white flower of Lily or Peace Lily signifies peace and rest to the soul and comfort to the family. This flower is also popularly chosen for the funerals because of its scent.
This type of flower is associated with grief and mourning in countries throughout Europe. When they think of condolence flowers, chrysanthemums are the only flower to choose. On the contrary, Chrysanthemums are the flowers that refer to truth and beauty in other parts of the world.
Carnations are an ideal funeral flower because of the beliefs of many Christians that the flowers of Carnations bloomed from where Mary’s tears fell when the Lord Jesus Christ died on the cross. Since then, this flower was significantly considered in funeral flower arrangements.
Orchids are very common in funerals because of its beautiful and long lasting petals and because of its sentimental meaning of everlasting love. Orchids come in white, pink, purple, and yellow, which are perfect for the colors of grief and mourning.
Roses are not only romantic and sweet but also meaningful and versatile. Roses are mostly used in funeral flowers to symbolize eternal love. The various colors of Roses available at the flower shops provide options for the arrangement.
Message of Condolences and Sympathy
Part of the etiquette in funeral flowers is the inclusion of card for the message of condolences and sympathy. If you are sending funeral flowers, it is very essential to write your message on the card and your name. The family will surely love to know who the senders of the flowers were.
Message cards are also your best way to write in words the messages of sympathy and condolences that you can’t peak and utter personally to the family. By leaving a few words of hope and encouragement, your funeral flowers will be worthwhile.
Whether you are sending funeral flowers to sympathize and comfort the family, giving considerations to these proper etiquettes in sending funeral flowers and sympathy bouquet will make you confident of your flower delivery to someone who grieves over the death of a loved one.