The following explanation is typically what a wake means in Australian society. It’s meaning around the world differs. This article is provided by Sydney Coffins. Sydney Coffins is a memorial product and funeral provider in Australia, specialising in unique and personalised coffins, and caskets.
Funerals are as old as humanity itself. History has shown that people feel the need to have a funeral for a loved one. This continues to this day. A ‘wake’ is an event that can be part of a funeral.
In most countries, a wake will mean the gathering of mourners at a person house or funeral home where the body of the deceased is present. The deceased person is often in an open casket where the casket has a double lid. One section of the casket can be open.
So what is a ‘wake’ in Australia?
The word ‘wake’ in Australia is also known as a ‘gathering’, or a ‘post-funeral reception’.
In Australia, a wake is a social gathering of the funeral attendees after the funeral service and burial have concluded. It is an opportunity to remember the deceased person and offer condolences to the immediate family and friends. Food and beverage are often served.
Where and when does a wake occur?
Wakes in Australian can take place almost anywhere. However, they are usually at a private home, church hall, private hall, club, hotel, or bar. It usually occurs immediately after the burial or cremation of the deceased person.
Does a funeral need to have a wake?
No, it is a personal decision made by the wishes of the deceased person or the family. One’s religion, culture and family traditions may influence whether a wake will be part of the funeral. If you are planning a wake you may want to read our article on Funeral Catering – The Best Food For A Post-Funeral Reception.