The way we grieve is an ingrained part of our culture both for the bereaved and those who want to comfort them. With COVID-19 there was shock for both as their usual funeral or wake script was removed. They were uncertain as to what to do and yet their hearts were open to people and feeling their grief.

According to Orla Keegan (pictured) head of education and bereavement at the Irish Hospice Foundation, the wake and funeral – which Irish people do very well – have a strong purpose.

“They acknowledge the reality of what has happened; the person is dead. All those condolences, visits and chats with each one telling a story or saying what the person meant to them are important. They are reinforcing the fact that the person is gone and are helping the family to that realisation.