This Sunday the Lady Anne Funerals team will be featured on ABC's Compass in a five-part series called 'Faith & Funerals'. So I thought this would be a great time to talk about filming an experience we talk so little about.
What is Faith & Funerals?
Faith & Funerals is a powerful national series that bridges the gap between outdated funeral ideas and what we as modern Australians actually celebrate. Throughout the show (and whilst Compass was filming with us), we accompany the friends and relatives of the deceased through intimate moments of the diverse funeral process.
The series started airing a couple of weekends ago so you may have already started watching it!
A fresh new face for funeral directors
You might be wondering why Lady Anne Funerals was approached to participate in the series. Well, I believe that our women-lead team is quite unique in the funeral industry - many funeral homes are not independently run nor are they solely run by women. Just like the families we help, we too are mothers, sisters, and daughters. I think this gives us a different way of handling the funeral process compared to many other funeral homes. We sit with the families, laugh and cry with the families and tease out all the little things that will ensure a truly memorable tribute. Together, this gives a new fresh face to lady funeral directors and is more in line with 21st century Australian funeral services.
Filming Faith & Funerals
Although filming the series was very satisfying for both myself and the Lady Anne team, I must admit that filming was not without its difficulties. Bringing cameras into one of the most intimate and private moments that we experience was one of the most scary experiences of a lifetime. But the families that bravely welcomed cameras allowed the series to shed light on what has changed in just a couple of generations.
Things change, funerals are no exception
The whole point of Faith & Funerals was to show everyday Australians how diverse we are when it comes to the funeral process and this is something I have seen throughout my years in the funeral industry. As well, we should all be aware that diversity goes beyond our religious beliefs - choosing to use technology also contributes to our diversity.
What do I mean by that? Well, families are choosing to share the story of their loved ones through photos and short videos captured on their smartphones which is also accompanied by their favourite song (instead of traditional prayers). As well, distance is no longer a barrier. Many have embraced web-casting and video streaming services so that family and friends can also attend the funeral of their loved ones from anywhere in the world.
Our faith & funerals in the future
Picturing funerals of the future, I think that we may experience something radically different, perhaps no funerals at all. More people are already choosing not to have a funeral. Some are due to cost, others are due to no family and some request just the memorial service. I think we are going to see a lot more of these types of bereavement services rather than the traditional funeral.
Watch Faith & Funerals
If you would like to catch the episode you can watch it this Sunday on ABC1 or ABC iview at 6:30pm. We will also be live tweeting during the show so be sure to follow us (@LadyAnneFuneral) along with the hashtag #ABCcompass.