Covid-19: funerals ‘should be deferred’

13 March 2020

iStock

PROPOSALS to help contain the coronavirus should include the deferral of all funeral services for victims the prohibition of relatives of the deceased from visiting funeral parlours or undertakers’ offices, the Irish Association of Funeral Directors suggests.

In all cases, the corpse should be placed in a body bag that is sealed and not reopened, the Association says, and funeral limousines or other cars should not be provided. The remains should be moved to a specific location set up for the purpose on the funeral directors’ premises, and no embalming should take place.

The body should be placed in the coffin chosen by the bereaved, closed, and not reopened. Burial or cremation should take place as soon as possible, immediately afterwards.

The Association urges a prohibition of public gatherings including “church services, gatherings at funeral homes, residences, crematorium chapels, etc.” .

About 80 per cent of funerals in Ireland are conducted by members of the Association, whose membership stands at 342.

“These protocols are to ensure that infection does not spread from the deceased or from their close family and friends who may be infected from contact with the deceased or each other, ” the Association says.

Coronavirus (Covid-19) update

The latest: Daily news updates

Get the free Church Times email bulletin

RESOURCES FOR CHURCHES 

> Lift Up Your Hearts: 27 March (PDF download)

> All our recommended resources for prayer, worship, live streaming and more

SHORT-TERM SUBSCRIPTION

Unable to get to the newsagent or pass on your copy of the Church Times as usual?

Get the paper delivered for the next few weeks

Welcome to the Church Times

​To explore the Church Times website fully, please sign in or subscribe.

Non-subscribers can read four articles for free each month. (You will need to register.)