Funeral expenses paid by ward

Discuss questions around local unit policies for budgeting, reconciling, etc. This forum should not contain specific financial or membership information.
eblood66
Senior Member
Posts: 3163
Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2007 8:17 am
Location: Cumming, GA, USA

Re: Funeral expenses paid by ward

Postby eblood66 » Mon Nov 04, 2013 3:26 pm

aebrown wrote:
lajackson wrote:And the Relief Society sisters will be more than willing to help with a meal, as appropriate. Often they will donate the food as a pot luck, but the cost of the meal would come out of budget funds and would be simple, as well.

I don't see how the RS sisters could "donate the food as a pot luck"; that seems to me to be a misinterpretation of the narrow exception for "activities in which members provide food" (HB2, Section 13.2.8). But maybe I'm misunderstanding you, since you said in that same sentence that "the cost of the meal would come out of budget funds," which seems appropriate.

I don't know about other places but in our ward the meal after the funeral is generally only for the family and very close friends. The ward usually arranges the entire meal, the family pays the ward back for the meat, and ward members donate casseroles, salads and such. I don't see such a family meal as a ward activity that is covered by 13.2.8. Rather I see it as service and ward members taking care of one another. If a family can't afford to help in such a situation there are generally other ways of providing service so no one is excluded. And, of course, providing this food is always voluntary. I don't think the handbook means to prohibit ward members from helping each other directly.

If the family can't afford to pay for the meat then we would probably try to reduce the expense as much as possible and pay for that potion with budget funds. But we would still allow ward members to help out with the side dishes. And if a few ward members wanted to donate the meat even, I don't see any problem with that.

User avatar
aebrown
Community Administrator
Posts: 15097
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 8:48 pm
Location: Sandy, Utah

Re: Funeral expenses paid by ward

Postby aebrown » Mon Nov 04, 2013 4:24 pm

eblood66 wrote:I don't think the handbook means to prohibit ward members from helping each other directly.

Upon further reflection, I agree with you. Thanks for the helpful explanation.

lajackson
Community Moderators
Posts: 8578
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2008 9:27 pm
Location: US

Re: Funeral expenses paid by ward

Postby lajackson » Mon Nov 04, 2013 8:18 pm

aebrown wrote:
eblood66 wrote:I don't think the handbook means to prohibit ward members from helping each other directly.

Upon further reflection, I agree with you. Thanks for the helpful explanation.

I still think the Handbook instruction is important. A wise bishop is going to be very aware of the situation of his members, make sure that what they do is within their means, and provide budget funds where needed to augment their willing service without taking advantage of their willingness to serve.

jirp
Member
Posts: 183
Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2013 8:02 pm
Location: Greybull WY

Re: Funeral expenses paid by ward

Postby jirp » Sat Nov 30, 2013 3:42 pm

For our ward usually the ward provided the table service and the meat for the funeral was all. The members were requested to provided other items as needed. As for limiting it to immediate family that is fine. Where do you draw the line? We had 2 funerals last year that with almost no friends included the family alone was well over 120 people in attendance for the dinner.(120 because that is are steel chair count and we had to set tables well beyond that) Nearly the whole chapel was reserved for the family for the funeral. Many of those in a year and the best planned budgets break even if the ward isn't footing the whole bill for the food.

It is not the norm for the funds to be rolled over in budget to the next year. It can be done at the stake presidents discretion but is not supposed to be the norm. Unused ward budget is supposed to return to the stake and unused stake budget is supposed to return to church headquarters. See handbook 1, section 14.7.2, third sub head, paragraph 6.

User avatar
Michael_Newman
New Member
Posts: 46
Joined: Sat Aug 15, 2009 7:57 pm
Location: USA

Re: Funeral expenses paid by ward

Postby Michael_Newman » Mon Nov 09, 2015 7:00 pm

Our ward is not located in a large city.

Today I made phone calls to see what the costs would be in our area:

1) $300 to $550 to purchase a burial plot in cemetery
2) $550 to open and close the burial plot for burial of deceased.
3) $575 required purchase of casket "liner" when casket is buried in plot (prevents erosion of lawn)
4) $300 to $1000 for casket (wood)
5) $500 for embalming
6) $1000 for mortician services (storage of body, pickup and delivery transportation, etc)

On the low side, the above amounts to around $3225.00

Question: Has it been anyone's experience that the bishop may authorize payment of the above if the deceased member and their spouse (both temple worthy) are in serious financial hardship? (There is a small Social Security burial allowance of $250 paid to the surviving spouse)

russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 26187
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Re: Funeral expenses paid by ward

Postby russellhltn » Mon Nov 09, 2015 7:28 pm

Michael_Newman wrote:Today I made phone calls to see what the costs would be in our area:

1) $300 to $550 to purchase a burial plot in cemetery
2) $550 to open and close the burial plot for burial of deceased.
3) $575 required purchase of casket "liner" when casket is buried in plot (prevents erosion of lawn)
4) $300 to $1000 for casket (wood)
5) $500 for embalming
6) $1000 for mortician services (storage of body, pickup and delivery transportation, etc)

On the low side, the above amounts to around $3225.00

A fair amount of this thread has talked about the costs costs of the funeral itself - for example, refreshments afterwards. (In my area such "refreshments" are closer to a buffet.)


Michael_Newman wrote:Question: Has it been anyone's experience that the bishop may authorize payment of the above if the deceased member and their spouse (both temple worthy) are in serious financial hardship? (There is a small Social Security burial allowance of $250 paid to the surviving spouse)

You might want to read this post up-thread.
Have you searched the Help Center? Try doing a Google search and adding "site:churchofjesuschrist.org/help" to the search criteria.

So we can better help you, please edit your Profile to include your general location.

lajackson
Community Moderators
Posts: 8578
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2008 9:27 pm
Location: US

Re: Funeral expenses paid by ward

Postby lajackson » Mon Nov 09, 2015 8:17 pm

Michael_Newman wrote:Has it been anyone's experience that the bishop may authorize payment of the above if the deceased member and their spouse (both temple worthy) are in serious financial hardship?

Guidelines in Handbook 1:18.6.7 explain how a bishop may arrange for a funeral and pay those expenses if there is a need.

russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 26187
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Re: Funeral expenses paid by ward

Postby russellhltn » Mon Nov 09, 2015 8:57 pm

lajackson wrote:Guidelines in Handbook 1:18.6.7 explain how a bishop may arrange for a funeral and pay those expenses if there is a need.

You mean Handbook 2. <grin>

Handbook 1: 5.2 provides general guidance on the issue of Fast Offerings and would be worth reviewing.
Have you searched the Help Center? Try doing a Google search and adding "site:churchofjesuschrist.org/help" to the search criteria.

So we can better help you, please edit your Profile to include your general location.

Gary_Miller
Senior Member
Posts: 1222
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2011 10:42 am
Location: Emmett, Idaho

Re: Funeral expenses paid by ward

Postby Gary_Miller » Tue Nov 10, 2015 6:24 am

I think it important to remember that the immediate family of the deceased should be taking on much of this responsibility if arrangements were not made ahead of time by the deceased. Of times there is life insurance and other way for family members to pay these expenses. The Bishop working with the family should be able to determine these needs. Its not simply the deceased do not have the funds so the church should pay the expenses. Many times they have children who and should be expected to help with expenses.

russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 26187
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Re: Funeral expenses paid by ward

Postby russellhltn » Tue Nov 10, 2015 9:56 am

Gary_Miller wrote:I think it important to remember that the immediate family of the deceased should be taking on much of this responsibility if arrangements were not made ahead of time by the deceased.

Which is the general guidance of Handbook 1: 5.2: Individual, family, church - in that order.
Have you searched the Help Center? Try doing a Google search and adding "site:churchofjesuschrist.org/help" to the search criteria.

So we can better help you, please edit your Profile to include your general location.


Return to “Local Unit Finance”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest