While it's never good to be late for any scheduled event, a funeral is one of the worst things for which you can be tardy. Your presence at the event is supposed to bring some degree of comfort to the bereaved family, and being late sends a message that the funeral service isn't a priority for you. Of course, this probably isn't true. Whether you were caught in bad traffic, delayed at work earlier in the day, or had trouble getting your children dressed and out the door, there are many reasons that you might end up running late to a funeral. Here are some tips on how you can proceed with such a scenario:
Drop Family Members At The Door
If you pull into the funeral home parking lot about the time that the service is scheduled to start, you may notice that the lot is full. One approach that you can take is to drop your spouse (and children, if applicable) at the door. They can rush to the funeral home and take their seats, as well as hold an empty seat for you. You may end up taking a few minutes to get your vehicle parked, but it's easier for you to slip into the room on your own than do so with your family in tow.
Listen From The Hallway
If you get to the funeral home after the service has started, you can still enter the building and look for the room in which the service is taking place. Depending on the room's layout, size, and how crowded it is, you might be able to sneak through the rear door and grab a seat in the back row. Try to assess how disruptive this behavior might be, though. If everyone is standing to sing a hymn, it may be easier to sneak in. In the middle of the eulogy, doing so may be disruptive. If you feel that it's a bad idea to enter the room, simply stand out of the way in the hallway. You'll be able to still hear the service but won't distract people with your late arrival.
Find The Family Afterward
If there were a visitation or informal greeting period before the service, you'd have missed it — which means that the grieving family may not know about your attendance. If you're able to find the right opportunity, look for the family afterward. You don't necessarily need to acknowledge your tardiness. Just give some hugs and handshakes and express a gentle message of sympathy.
Contact a company like Conboy-Westchester Funeral Home Inc for more information and assistance.