Last week I attended a memorial service and this week officiated at a funeral. They’re heavy times emotionally but also times of reflection for me. The value of that mourning and reflection has been lost on some people today. When David Bowie passed away last year, according to his wishes he had a “direct cremation,” without any funeral service. He was just gone without an opportunity even for family to mourn his loss. People who opt for this often do so to have a celebration instead – beach parties and theme events are trendy. One person I know asked for everyone to gather at the house with a bottle of wine instead of the more depressing funeral option. Are funerals outdated traditions? Should we replace them with happier substitutes? Or maybe just do away with them altogether?