With Melbourne in its second round of stage 3 restrictions, many families are choosing direct or unattended cremation.  Stage 3 COVID 19 restrictions limit only 10 mourners to attending a cremation, burial or funeral service in Melbourne. Subsequently, many grieving families are having to make the heartfelt choice of who can and cannot attend the service. While live streaming video services are an option, the additional cost and  lack of friends and family attending have families looking for other options.

Many are deciding not to have a traditional funeral service at all and choosing a direct or unattended cremation instead. For some, once restrictions are eased they may choose to  have a larger gathering where collectively they can share their grief. However, many families choose to grieve and remember their loved ones life in different ways

There has been much public comment about the small number of mourners at funerals and how difficult this can be for family and friends. There is no doubt this is true for many. However, some families have described how in some ways they preferred the small intimate services they were able to have, without the large public gathering and intense focus this can have on them at this time.

The direct cremation, although having always been available, has been seen by many as a sad reflection at the end of life.  Without the attendance of any mourners. Yet, those that say this fail to recognise the choices that we all have available and the need for families to make choices that are relevant and meaningful to them. We all celebrate or commemorate life in different ways, this is no better expressed by looking at our diverse Australian culture and religions. Religious, ritual are diverse and meaningful to those of faith, yet in an increasingly secular society many do not have the faith and rely on their personal values and choice. Also,  as immigrants cultures merge and assimilate with our own, people begin to question and create their own values on what is important to them. 

Direct unattended cremation is one such choice. it is done with love, care and clear vision, that reflects those of the deceased and their families.

Direct Cremation does not always mean there is no recognition of ones life. Celebration of ones life can be performed in many ways, not always public and not necessarily visible. Sometime with celebrants, but usually private family affairs.

Some families have chosen the scattering of cremated remains or ashes as the focal point of their final farewell.

These could be in relevant bushland settings, beaches, bay or ocean  in one case the cremated remains were divided and sent to the four corners of the world.

There is no right and wrong about how to say goodbye, it just about what relevant and meaningful to you.

ABC Cremations

Funeral Services & Cemeteries In Moorabbin , Victoria