Today’s Illustration: Ashes To Ashes . . .

What: Funerals

Where: Approximately 150,00 people die every day across the world.

  • 28,000 China
  • 25,000 India
  • 7,500 USA
  • 5,000 Russia
  • 3,500 Brazil

Average life expectancy in the US — 78-79 years

Highest months are December & January

Lowest months are July & August

How: Burial vs. Cremation

  • Two companies control 82% of all casket sales in the United States — Batesville & Matthews — 8 out of 10 caskets are made by these two companies.
  • Average casket cost $2,300
  • Amazon, Walmart, and Costco all sell caskets for around $1,000.
  • A Cosco Casket $899.00
  • Caskets can range upward to $43,000

  • 56% of US deaths are handled by cremation. The projection is 73% by 2030.
  • “Joseph In Egypt” — By Chuck Ailing —

  • What are some options for preserving the cremation ashes? 
    • Parting Stone has raised $1.9m to turn ashes into stones. A person yields 40-60 smooth stones that vary in color, shape, and texture.
    • Eterneva has raised ~$10m to turn ashes into a diamond that you can wear. Prices start at $3k.
    • British company Vinyly will press ashes into a record, starting at ~$1.4k.
    • Recompose turns human bodies into soil, a more sustainable and cost-friendly solution than traditional funerals.
    • LA-based artist C.C. Boyce makes “Planturns” that hold both the ashes of the deceased and a live plant. They retail for $250-$600.” — [1]

Can you still go to heaven if you are cremated?

. . . . 

Key Biblical Thoughts:

  • death / dying
  • the resurrection
  • burial
  • funerals
  • cremation
  • “and he died” – Genesis 5
  • the tribulation
  • salvation
  • “death, where is thy sting”
  • the last enemy
  • Satan
  • sin
  • the fall
  • David’s tomb – Acts 2:29
  • Joseph of Aramathea
  • Joseph’s casket – Genesis 50:25-26
  • Lazarus
  • Easter

. . . . 

Other Information & Links:


“Did someone say free vacation?

Companies like Batesville and Matthews have gone to the end of the Earth and back to ensure that their caskets are the only ones sold at funeral homes, whether that means offering loans in exchange for exclusivity, or developing loyalty through “perks.”

“Batesville would say, ‘Hey, you need a showroom in your place.’ Batesville would supply all of the caskets, and they would put a showroom in,” says Jim Malamas, an entrepreneur whose effort to bring cheap caskets to the industry was the subject of a Bloomberg Businessweek story. “As long as that funeral homeowner owed Batesville money, Batesville owned the showroom.”

Batesville has crafted an entire rewards system around keeping funeral directors loyal. “The Batesville guys might be giving away tickets for ball games or all these little perks,” says Malamas. “They’ll give you a $3k vacation.”

A 2005 Forbes article reported that Batesville was “wining and dining” its funeral directors, flying them to its 657-acre Indiana property Jawacdah Farms and offering them local shrimp and chocolate bars in the shape of caskets.

Funeral directors are sometimes “wined and dined” by the big casket industry (via Pixabay)

“On a trip like that you take away more than you leave,” one funeral director told the magazine. “It’s never ‘How can we sell caskets?’ but ‘How can we improve your life, business, and the customers you serve?’”

These entrenched relationships have a real impact on the ability of casket startups to break into the industry.”

. . . .

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