• How to Plan a Loved One’s Funeral

    Colorful Plumeria

    Planning a loved one’s funeral is a huge responsibility for anyone to bear, even if it was someone you were not very close to. After all, you are in charge of the deceased’s final day on earth and for planning the last chance for loved ones to pay their respects. You can simplify the process for yourself by following these tips:

    Meet With Other Mourners Everything needs to go smoothly when preparing a funeral , and if you take up the task alone, mistakes are bound to happen. It always helps to bring other loved ones in on the process. Not only does this lift some of the pressure off your shoulders, but it also brings in some additional insight on the deceased’s final wishes. Then everyone can put their heads together, divide up the tasks, and work together to ensure that the funeral is perfect.

    Do Your Research Don’t think that you are obligated to hire the funeral home that your loved one’s body was released to. Funeral planning is a major industry in the United States, and funeral homes differ widely to appeal to specific customers. Shop around town for a funeral home with a nice setting and, most importantly, a staff that you feel comfortable trusting to do everything right.

    Place an Obituary Once you have your plans for the funeral laid out, write out an obituary in your loved one’s local paper. Many newspapers have online submission forms that you can fill out and send in. Obituaries notify your loved one’s friends and family who may not otherwise know about the death, and provide information on his or her legacy and funeral. In addition, if you’d rather have mourners donate to charity than overwhelm the family with a garden’s worth of flowers, the obituary is the place to say it.

    You can always count on Chapel of the Chimes Oakland to take care of your deceased loved ones. We offer cremations in accordance with many religious specifications and an array of compassionate funeral planning services. Call us at (510) 654-0123 to learn more.

  • The Heart of Grieving Workshop

    The Heart of Grieving

  • Tips for Coping with the Passing of a Close Friend


    Losing a friend is a tragic time for everyone. However, don’t let grief get the best of you. There are many things you can do to cope with your loss in a way that will help everyone affected by the tragedy. Read on to find out how you can cope with the passing of a close friend or colleague:

    Help Out the Family

    After the death occurs, the deceased’s family will want to grieve together and collect their thoughts, but they may not have the time to do so. You can help ease the financial strain on their shoulders by offering to help them out. Even by just offering to watch their kids or making them dinner, you can free up some time for them and show that they are in your thoughts.

    Make a Donation in the Deceased’s Name

    If your friend was passionate about a certain charity or cause, a donation is a great way to honor his memory or create a legacy. Make it in his name, and everyone at the charity who hears about it will know that your friend was a selfless, generous person who, even in death, would be happy to know that his favorite cause is well cared for.

    Be Careful What You Say

    Grief has a tendency to make mourners very sensitive, and you don’t want to say anything at the funeral home that could potentially set them off. For example, you never want to remind the family that your friend is no longer in pain if he died from some painful disease. As true as it may be, you don’t know if your friend and his family argued about euthanasia, or anything else you’re unaware of that could make your comments seem rude. In many cases, it’s perfectly acceptable to remain quiet.

    If you or someone you know has suffered the death of a loved one, Chapel of the Chimes in Oakland is here to help. We offer cremations, funeral planning services, and a dedicated staff that is there to assist you every step of the way. Call (510) 654-0123 to speak with a member of our funeral planning team.

  • Why Cremation May Be the Right Choice for Your Recently Deceased Loved One

    meadow of wildflowers, mt.rainier

    One of the more important decisions you will make in the first hours or days following your loved one’s death is between burying and cremating the deceased. While burials have been considered traditional in the United States for centuries, an influx of families from Europe and Asia where cremation is the norm has driven up the practice’s popularity in the U.S. Americans of all backgrounds are now considering cremation as an alternative to the traditional ground burial, often for the following reasons:

    Cultural or Religious Tradition Societies in South and East Asia have been cremating their dead for thousands of years. If your loved one adheres to Buddhist or Hindu principles or has been heavily influenced by regional Asian cultural practices, cremation may be the right choice.

    Green Alternative Depending on the memorialization arrangements you make before and after the cremation process, cremation can be a much more environmentally friendly method of disposing of a loved one’s body than traditional burial. If you opt to not have a viewing, the use of formaldehyde can be avoided. You can also save land and avoid unintentional soil pollution sometimes caused by caskets.

    Lower Costs In its most basic form, cremation is less expensive than ground burial. Direct cremation services with an accompanying urn may cost up to 50% less than direct burial services, even with an inexpensive casket and burial plot.

    Memorialization Options Opting for cremation gives a family a choice between several potentially appealing memorialization options. Based on your wishes and those of the deceased, you can choose to scatter some or all of your loved one’s ashes in a meaningful place. For storage of the remaining ashes, you can choose between a columbarium niche on cemetery grounds, an urn or memorial container for display at home, and other meaningful options.

    Serving the entire East Bay area, Chapel of the Chimes in Oakland offers high quality cremation services and a wide range of cemetery memorial options. To speak with one of our caring and dedicated funeral service providers about the cremation or funeral planning processes, call (510) 654-0123.


  • Jazz at the Chimes This Sunday!

    Jazz at the Chimes - January 2013

  • Funeral Arrangements and How Children and Teens Cope with the Death of a Parent

    Because everybody grieves differently, understanding one’s pain and how to fix it can be difficult. This is especially true for children and teens after the death of a parent. Special care must be taken to help them come to terms with such a loss.

    In this video, Dr. Donna Schuurman, author of “Coming to Terms with the Death of a Parent,” explains that many people mistakenly try to “take pain away” from grieving children by downplaying their loss, which can lead them to withdraw from society and cause social problems in later life. A better approach, she says, is to help them keep their parent’s memory alive. Click on the video to hear more details about this method.

    You can always rely on Chapel of the Chimes to help you in your time of need. From funeral arrangements to estate planning services, our staff’s professional and compassionate care are second to none. Call us at (866) 475-9407 for more information.

  • The Eulogy at the Funeral: Your Final Gift to Your Loved One

    Fantasy blossom

    In the wake of your loved one’s passing, it can be difficult to concentrate on anything. The prospect of collecting your thoughts and preparing words of remembrance to deliver in honor of your loved one at his or her funeral service can even be daunting. As you plan for and deliver a eulogy, the following pointers may keep additional stress from piling on and interfering with your ability to focus on preparing your final gift for your loved one.

    Include Others Do not burden yourself with the sole task of preparing your loved one’s eulogy . Chat with friends and family members who may have helpful insights. Have someone who was close to the deceased proofread the draft you prepare and offer suggestions for improvement.

    Identify a Theme As you sit down with your notes and prepare to write a first draft of your loved one’s obituary, look for related elements that you can tie together into an overarching theme. It may be a personality trait or a beloved pastime, something that your loved one would be proud or humored to be remembered by.

    Be Mindful of Your Audience While preparing the eulogy, keep in mind the audience that will be present at the funeral ceremony. Keep your eulogy to a maximum length of no more than ten minutes, and incorporate appropriate humor and anecdotes that the audience will find engaging but not rude or insensitive.

    Don’t Stress A eulogy is a tribute to your loved one. It will also help you and other funeral attendees make peace with his or her departure from this earth. Keep this in mind, and try not to be too hard on yourself as you prepare your loved one’s obituary. As long as the words come from your heart, they will be a touching gift to the friend or family member you have lost.

    When you work with a helpful funeral services provider, you will be able to devote more time and energy to preparing a eulogy and focusing on other personal touches of your loved one’s funeral. To speak with an experienced funeral home representative in the Bay Area , call Chapel of the Chimes in Oakland at (510) 654-0123. Our historic building and scenic grounds make our cemetery a desirable final resting place.

  • Happy New Year!


    May the coming year bring lots of harmony, good health and prosperity in your life!

    Wishing you and your family a very happy new year from all of us at Chapel of the Chimes in Oakland!