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Attending A Traditional Japanese Funeral? How To Prepare For The Day

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If you're going to attend a traditional Japanese funeral for a friend, it's important that you understand the culture. Traditional Japanese funerals are quite different from traditional American funerals, especially where the traditions are concerned. If you're not sure how to prepare for your friend's funeral, read the information provided here. This information will help you pay your respects to the family and honor your departed friend while adhering to traditional Japanese funeral traditions. 

Start With the Right Clothing

If you're preparing for a Japanese funeral, it's important that you start with the right clothing. In traditional American funerals, attendees can choose any clothing that seems appropriate. However, Japanese custom dictates a different approach to funeral attire. Before you attend your friend's funeral, be sure that you have a black suit or dress to wear. Black business suits, with white dress shirts, should be worn by men. Women should wear either a black pants suit or a black dress for the occasion. If carrying a handbag, that should be black, as well. 

Choose Appropriate Flowers

If you've decided to send flowers as a memorial tribute to your friend, be sure to choose the right flowers. According to Japanese culture and tradition,  there are specific flowers that are acceptable for funerals. Those flowers include yellow and white chrysanthemums and lilies. Brightly colored flowers should be avoided. If you're not sure how to choose a funeral arrangement, contact the funeral home. They can provide you with information regarding appropriate flowers.

Be Prepared for Two Services

If your friend has passed away and the family has planned a traditional Japanese funeral, be prepared for two services. In most cases, there will be two separate services for your friend. The wake will be the first service. During the wake, friends and family will gather to pay respects to the departed. The funeral will be the second service. This service is usually reserved for family members and for close friends of the departed. If you were close friends, you should plan to attend both the wake and the funeral. 

Give a Monetary Gift to the Family

If you plan to attend a traditional Japanese funeral for a close friend who has passed away and you want to show your respects to the family, don't forget to offer condolence money. Offering a cash gift is a way to show respect to the family and to provide help during their time of grief.

For more information on Asian funerals, contact a professional near you.