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Viewing (museum display)
Museum of Funeral Customs

In funeral services, a viewing (sometimes referred to as Calling Hours, Reviewal, Funeral Visitation or a Wake in the United States and Canada) is the time that the family and friends come to see the deceased after they have been prepared by a funeral home.[1] It is generally recommended that any body to be viewed be embalmed in order to create the best possible presentation of the deceased.[2] A viewing may take place at the funeral parlor, in a family home or at a church or chapel prior to the actual funeral service. Some cultures, such as the Māori of New Zealand, often take the body to the Marae or tribal community hall.

Viewing is sometimes combined with a celebration of the decedent's life called a wake although in some places the term wake is interchangeable with viewing. Many authorities consider the viewing important to the grieving process as it gives a chance to say goodbye on a personal level.[3] It also can make it easier to accept the reality of the death, which can often seem unreal especially in the industrial world where death is handled by professionals and the family may only know of a death through phone calls rather than experiencing it as it occurs.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Handbook for Mortals : What happens at funeral viewing hours?". Mywhatever.com. Retrieved 2012-05-17. 
  2. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions". Nea.gov.sg. 2005-03-03. Retrieved 2012-05-17. 
  3. ^ "Access". Medscape. Retrieved 2012-05-17. 
  4. ^ "What is the Difference Between "Viewing" and "Visitation"?". Funerals.org. 2007-11-26. Retrieved 2012-05-17. 

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viewing_(funeral) — Please support Wikipedia.
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6 news items


Tue, 16 Sep 2014 10:15:00 -0700

SAGINAW, Mich. — A funeral home here has just added an unusual new convenience for mourners — a drive-thru viewing window. The Saginaw News reports Paradise Funeral Chapel has installed a window that displays a body set up in a special area ...
Fri, 05 Sep 2014 20:28:26 -0700

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Losing a family member is painful enough. Imagine showing up at the funeral home and finding the wrong person is in your loved one's casket. Marvel Freeman and members of her family arrived at Stevens Lakeside Chapel in ...


Sun, 24 Aug 2014 19:31:11 -0700

ST. LOUIS — On the eve of Michael Brown's funeral Monday, the teen's parents saw their son for the first time since his death and tried to prepare for a burial that will test their strength. At noon Sunday, about 100 family members and friends ...

NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
Fri, 05 Sep 2014 10:36:54 -0700

The suit alleges Karen Jones passed away in the spring and her body was taken to Johnson Family Mortuary for viewing, funeral and cremation. "You go from thinking about good times, to that-what they did to her," said Jones' sister, Connie Mabray. "We ...
Daily Herald
Sat, 23 Aug 2014 23:23:26 -0700

Graveside service (no viewing/funeral), for friends and family will be held at 11:00 AM, Tuesday, August 26th at the Provo City Cemetery, 610 South State Street, Provo, UT. Condolences may be sent online at www.bergmortuary.com. Thank you for all the ...
Pocono Record
Tue, 26 Aug 2014 21:07:30 -0700

There will be no viewing. Funeral services will begin at 11 a.m. Friday, Aug. 29, at William H. Clark Funeral Home, 1003 Main St., Stroudsburg, with Pastor David Berryman officiating. Burial will follow at Laurelwood Cemetery in Stroudsburg. In lieu of ...

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