What is a Wake?

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What is a Wake?

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Sometimes people die. When people die, their family usually has a wake. A wake is a special time when people remember the person who died and tell each other they are going to miss that person. Sometimes at a wake the person who died is placed in special box called a casket. Sometimes the casket is open so people can see the person who died. Sometimes the casket is closed and there is just a picture of the person who died. At a wake people are usually very quiet. Sometimes people are crying because they miss the person who died. It is okay to cry. It is also okay not to cry. At a wake people usually walk up to the casket and are very quiet for just a minute or too. Then they usually wait in the funeral home or outside. I will probably wait outside. If I have any questions I can ask mom or dad when I am OUTSIDE. I will try to be very quiet in the funeral home. I will also try to ask my questions OUTSIDE. I might be able to go out to dinner when we are done at the wake. Mom and dad with

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A wake is a funeral tradition associated mostly with Irish culture, though there are equivalents in other cultures as well. A traditional wake takes place shortly after death and before the burial, but wakes held after the funeral are becoming more common. Traditionally, a wake is held in the home of the deceased, though some are held in funeral parlors today. A wake may simply be a viewing, at which people pay their last respects to the deceased, or it may be more of a party, combining mourning with a celebration of the deceased’s life and of his or her entry into the afterlife. Originally, a wake was held to watch for signs of life and to confirm that the person was dead before burial, and the custom evolved over time into the formal farewell it is today. In Ireland, there are a number of customs associated with the wake. All clocks in the house are stopped and mirrors are covered. The women of the family wash and dress the deceased, often in white, and perform keening, traditional m

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…The Irish practice of watching over the body by candlelight the night before the funeral and the often wild feasting which followed. This may have developed simply because mistakes sometimes happened. The purpose of the wake, therefore, was to create enough of a clatter to ensure that the deceased was truly dead, and to help the mourners forget their grief and resume normal life once they were sure. The wake is the period of time from death until the body is conveyed to the care of the church which is generally the evening before the day of burial. The steps, that were in the process of the Wake, are provided below: 1. Neighboring women experienced in laying out the body gather at the house of the deceased. 2. The body is washed 3. A habit is put on the body 4. A bed is prepared for the body. 5. If it is a man who has shaved, the body is shaved before the habit isput on 6. A crucifix is placed on the breast and rosary beads are put in thefingers. 7. Sheets are hung over the bed and

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A wake usually takes place during the period of visitation and viewing at the funeral home. It is a time to remember the life of the deceased and to commend him/her to God. It is open to all who choose to attend. The family is usually available at this time to receive visitors and condolences. It is often referred to as a vigil service.

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