Should I let my child attend a funeral?

By bringing our children to funerals, we invite them into the reality and mystery of death. This experience helps them develop empathy and compassion for others.

In our culture today, we often push death aside and pretend it doesn’t exist. We may think it would be better to hide children from pain and grief, but this stems from our own fears and struggles that we project onto others.

“Children have the unique ability to adapt to firsthand experiences and to culture in their own way—with their own minds and their own hearts—certain mysteries of life.”

Surrounded by their grieving loved ones, children learn the truth that life can be painful, but it is not bereft of joy even amid great pain. They learn to hope and to care for others who are hurting.