How Do Funeral Cultural Traditions Preserve a Rich Legacy?

mariachi band

Funeral cultural traditions are a powerful expression of identity, spirituality, and history.


A cornerstone of society for thousands of years, funeral services are a way to honor and celebrate the life of the deceased. They also provide a unique opportunity to pay homage to one's cultural heritage and pass down cherished customs to future generations. These deeply rooted traditions play a vital role in preserving a rich family legacy.


In this article, we will explore how funeral providers cater to clients of different cultures to create unique services that reflect their preferences and showcase their identities.


Black Funeral Traditions Celebrate Life and Spirituality


  • Homegoing Services: In many Black communities, funerals are referred to as "homegoing" services. These events focus on celebrating the life of the departed and are based on the belief that they are going home to be with the Lord. Funeral homes work closely with families to plan lively and uplifting services that may include gospel music, heartfelt eulogies, and spirited congregational singing.
  • Repast: After the funeral, it's customary for family and friends to gather for a meal and conversation. Funeral homes often assist in organizing these repasts, creating an atmosphere of community, care, and support.
  • Traditional Attire: Funeral homes ensure that the deceased is dressed according to family preferences, respecting the cultural significance of attire. In the Black culture, white is often worn to a funeral when the deceased is 80 years of age or older. It is seen as a sign of gratitude and celebration for a long life.


Latino Funeral Traditions Honor Ancestry and Heritage


  • Novenarios: A nine-day mourning period called the novenario involves prayer and reflection, allowing family and friends to support one another during the grieving process. Funeral homes can assist in coordinating novenario
  • Traditional Music: Music plays a significant role in Latino funerals. Funeral providers can arrange for mariachi bands or other traditional musicians to perform soulful songs to honor the person who passed on.
  • Extended visitations: Latino funerals are traditionally social events. Customary fare, such as pastelitos, tamales, and pan dulce, is usually served at the wake, and it’s not uncommon for family and friends to gather for long viewing periods that can last well into the evening.


Cultural funeral traditions like these are a powerful means of preserving a legacy. They provide a tangible link to the past, allowing family members to connect with their roots and pass down cherished customs to future generations. These traditions create a sense of continuity, ensuring that long-held values, beliefs, and cultural heritage are not forgotten.


How do funeral homes cater to cultural preferences?


Funeral providers recognize the importance of cultural funeral traditions and strive to create services that respect and reflect these customs. Evan W. Smith Funeral Services employs experienced, compassionate staff members who are familiar with various cultural practices and are always available to guide families through every step of the process. Some ways we cater to cultural preferences include:


  • Customization: We work closely with families to customize services to align with their cultural preferences. This may include incorporating specific rituals, music, food, attire, and decorations.
  • Cultural sensitivity: Our funeral home staff receives detailed training to ensure cultural sensitivity and understanding. They are respectful of diverse customs and beliefs and can assist families in making informed choices. If Spanish is your native language, our Spanish-speaking staff will ensure your family’s comfort and that all of your needs are met.
  • Resource networks: Our extensive networks include religious leaders, cultural advisors, and musicians who can contribute to culturally appropriate services. We can even assist with the transportation of your loved one anywhere in the world.
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At Evan W. Smith Funeral Services, we understand the importance of cultural funeral traditions in preserving a rich legacy. We embrace all ethnicities, races, and religious beliefs, and we feel that the funeral should honor your preferred practices. From funeral preplanning to personalized memorialization options, our matchless level of service has made us the trusted choice for families like yours.


Whatever your cultural background, we are here to support you in honoring your loved one through meaningful and culturally significant funeral services. If you have questions or wish to make funeral arrangements, we are here for you. Please contact us anytime.


About Evan W. Smith Funeral Services: Since 2009, residents of Wilmington, Dover, and the surrounding Delaware community have relied on the caring staff at Evan W. Smith Funeral Services to help them through their darkest hours. Family-owned and operated, the company offers an array of elite funeral care services, including traditional funerals, cremations, memorials, pre-planning, grief counseling, and more. With decades of experience in caring for families from all cultural backgrounds and diverse walks of life, Evan W. Smith Funeral Services is committed to creating memorable, uplifting experiences that always exceed expectations. For more information, please visit

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