The cremation: definition
In Switzerland, it is estimated that almost 85% of the deceased choose cremation as their funeral rite. This trend is set to increase further in the coming years. Pompes funèbres Cassar SA will be able to answer all your questions concerning this practice.
Cremation, also known as incineration, is a funeral technique that aims to burn and reduce the body of a deceased human being to ashes.
In Switzerland, cremation is practised exclusively in specialised establishments, called crematoria.
Do you know why cremation is increasingly in demand? The lifting of the ban imposed by the Catholic Church in 1963 has greatly contributed to this increase. But this growth can also be explained by different factors: the distance of families from burial sites, the decreasing interest in religious practices, the lack of space in cemeteries but also and above all the very high price of concessions and their maintenance.
What to do with the ashes ?
Different options are available to families:
- Columbarium : this is a place with niches in which the urns containing the ashes of the deceased are placed. They are taken back by the family to be kept at home, buried or placed in a private place
- Burial in a cemetery : cinerary tombs are intended to accommodate one or more urns. The ashes contained in an urn can be buried in a line grave or in a plot of a person who has already died, with the agreement of the next of kin. It is also possible to have an urn sealed on an existing grave.
- Garden of Remembrance : this is a place reserved for the anonymous deposit of ashes, without urns or other containers. Unlike concessions and online graves, there is no limit to the length of time the cremains may be deposited in the Garden of Remembrance.
- At home : In Switzerland, there is no obligation to leave the ashes in a cemetery. You can therefore keep them at home. You may also bury them in your garden or in a plot of land, provided that it is not private property that does not belong to you.
- Scattering of ashes : it is entirely possible to scatter the ashes of a deceased person in one or more places (lake, forest, mountain, river, etc.). In Switzerland, more and more people choose to scatter the ashes in the open air, according to the last wishes of the deceased or the choice of his or her relatives.
- Transport in Switzerland or abroad : the transport of the ashes is free in Switzerland and does not require any particular arrangement. For the transfer of the ashes abroad, the urn must be sealed. For this purpose, you can contact one of our 16 agencies in the canton of Vaud.
The steps involved in cremation
As with burial, the cremation of a body must take place no earlier than 24 hours and no later than 6 days after the date of death.
You will need several documents in order to obtain the authorisations for the cremation of a deceased relative:
- death certificate
- medical certificate confirming that the nature of the death and the absence of a battery-operated prosthesis in no way preclude a cremation
- cremation request signed and dated
After the Cremation
A cremation certificate is issued. This document confirms the identity and date of birth of the deceased. If the ashes are scattered in the open air, you will be asked to keep this certificate.
The steps to be taken will also depend on the desired destination of the ashes:
- declaration of scattering in the open air
- request for burial in a vault or grave in a row
- request for scattering in the memorial garden
Between the death and the cremation, Cassar Funeral Services will take care of all the administrative formalities for you. Indeed, all our employees attach great importance to being personally available to the bereaved families, to giving them quality attention and listening to them, and to favouring the human dimension of their activity. In this way, you are spared the various steps and can therefore live your mourning in a more “serene” way.