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Thread: Funeral in DR

  1. #1
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    Default Funeral in DR

    My 91 yr old mother-in-law died late Friday night in Santo Domingo, about 9 pm, and was at Blandino's Funeral Home by 8 am on Saturday. She wore a special white burial dress. Women prayed the rosary several times. All day wake, Mass there at the funeral home at 2, at 3 we were off to the cemetery [Cristo Redentor in SD] for burial in a downpour. The cemetery is massive, reminds me of St. John's Cemetery on the Bklyn/Queens border, streets with names and all. They had a tent with chairs set up, very efficient, carved granite plaque all ready. Several women [family and friends] singing songs saying goodbye.

    I was impressed with the efficiency of everything for the deceased - everything quick and accurate. So unlike most everything else I've experienced over the past 4 decades in DR.

    So many things so different from the US. They started to close the casket in front of everyone without prior comment. I jumped up and asked them to wait so we could all say our last goodbyes. Then the lid was slowly closed. I'm accustomed to NY, where they either wait for everyone to leave, or at least turn the casket around before closing the lid. And it took about 3 months before my mother's info was engraved on the granite headstone. Here it was done within 12 hours.

    At the cemetery, they slide the casket into the slot, [a special floral piece from her children was placed on top of the coffin], place the cement block in front and seal it, then cement in the granite plaque. Again, a cultural thing. I've never seen a coffin lowered into a grave or mausoleum while the family watches in NY.

    Beginning Sunday morning, our vecinos/neighbors in the campo started coming to our house to pay their respects to my husband, who was very touched by their warmth and sincerity. Many women wore all white cotton blouse & skirt sets [reminded me of battenberg]. They were unable to come to the funeral in Santo Domingo because of the distance - few of them have cars. There has been no music heard here anywhere since she died, one dear old friend of hers has forbidden her family to even use the TV.

    Sunday night at 6 pm started the first of 9 nights of Novena Masses for her. On next Monday night [9th day] there will be a gathering after the last Mass for family and friends in Santo Domingo. Because all of our neighbors out in the campo [where we have our house] have known her for 60-70 years, we're hosting a similar gathering for them on Sunday at our house. There will be prayers, and if it's like others out here, tamboras.

    Another thing that surprised me is that she had insurance for the funeral. Don't think I've ever heard of that before. Even without the insurance, the cost was surprisingly low, about $1300/US.

    Rest in Peace Dona Maria.




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  2. #2
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    My condolences to you and your family AE

  3. #3
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    Rip................

    Moderator DR1.com

  4. #4
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    My condolences as well.

  5. #5
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    RIP....Condolences for you and family....

  6. #6
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    AE...so sorry for your lose, my warmest of condolences to you and the family...

    ~As I read your post I can feel the warmth that has been bestowed for your mother in law.

  7. #7
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    Nice post AE - good to know that the DR does something well! And condolences too.

    Matilda

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    My condolences to you as well. May your abuela rest in peace. Thank you for sharing. You described an excellent service and warmth of your grandparents neighbors.

  9. #9
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    Condolences, but what a touching telling of the rituals, reminds me a bit of old Irish Catholic traditions.....let's hope some of these reverent traditions survive.

  10. #10
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    Like I told you before, this is done so differently here. I am happy that you posted this.

    HB

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