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Research from the NHS has shown there are more than 850,000 people in the UK who have dementia, and this number is set to increase with people living longer. With this in mind, it is likely that many people who have dementia will be seeking to handle their legal affairs surrounding the making of their Will.
Can a person with dementia make a valid Will?
Generally, if an individual is not of sound mind when they are making their Will, it may be possible to challenge it. The fact that someone suffers from dementia (or indeed any other mental health illness) when they make their Will, does not itself, render a Will invalid.
In order for a person to have the necessary capacity to make a Will they must understand:
- The fact that they are making a Will and its consequences.
- The extent of their property and assets.
- The claims of those who might expect to be left something in the Will.
- They must not suffer any delusion of the mind which influences how they may deal with disposing of their property i.e. leaving legacies in their Will which they would not have made, had they been of sound mind.
It is possible for a person with dementia to satisfy these criteria. It is not the individual’s general state of health, including dementia at issue; rather, it is the person’s cognitive understanding at a particular point in time, that is, when they are providing instructions to their solicitor.
Can I challenge a Will made by a person with dementia?
If someone was to try to challenge the Will, it would be necessary for them to prove, with medical evidence, that the person with dementia making the Will did not have capacity.
If a Will is found to be invalid, then any prior Will that had been written, will be deemed as the valid Will. If there is no prior Will, the Intestacy Rules apply. The intestacy rules are set out in the Inheritance and Trustees’ Power Act and determine who inherits what based on family connections.
The rules don’t take into account the closeness of your relationships or who is most in need. A good solicitor or Will writer will assess when taking Will instructions, if medical opinion on the Will maker’s capacity ought to be obtained before the Will is executed.
The practitioner should also record how they themselves have assessed the Will maker’s capacity. If these practical steps are taken, it will make the Will more robust and less susceptible to challenge.
Should a Will be challenged in Court, all the evidence, medical and otherwise, will be looked at very closely.
What if a family member with dementia wants to make a Will?
If you have a relative with dementia (or other mental illness) who would like to make a Will, or if you consider that a relative lacked capacity when their Will was written, or you’re an executor of a Will that is being challenged, it’s really important to speak to a specialist solicitor, as there could be
complex issues surrounding the WIll.
If you have any questions surrounding the dating of a Will or would like to know more regarding the Intestacy Rules, feel free to visit our website or you can get in touch with the Will Disputes Team at Myerson Solicitors.
When they die, before going to Heaven, many of our loved ones go to Purgatory for purification. Time spent there is to make them perfectly clean and free of earthly attachments when they come face to face with God. Meeting God in this way is referred to as the “beatific vision.”
Our understanding of Purgatory is that it is not a pleasant place. Departed souls suffer during this period of purification but if given the choice, they would choose the torment over returning to earth because they know they are closer to God. Our prayers help shorten their time in Purgatory. We pray for the dead because, although they can pray for us, they cannot pray for themselves and we want to lessen their time in Purgatory.
“The practice of recommending to God the souls in Purgatory, that He may mitigate the great pains which they suffer, and that He may soon bring them to His glory, is most pleasing to the Lord and most profitable to us. For these blessed souls are His eternal spouses, and most grateful are they to those who obtain their deliverance from prison, or even a mitigation of their torments. When, therefore, they arrive in Heaven, they will be sure to remember all who have prayed for them.”
~Saint Alphonsus di Ligouri~
How do we know that Purgatory Exists?
One of the reasons we believe in the existence of Purgatory is because, although its name is not specifically mentioned, it is explained to us in Scripture.
II Maccabees 12:43-46 tells us:
“And making a gathering, he [Judas] sent twelve thousand drachms of silver to Jerusalem for sacrifice to be offered for the sins of the dead, thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection, (For if he had not hoped that they that were slain should rise again, it would have seemed superfluous and vain to pray for the dead,) And because he considered that they who had fallen asleep with godliness, had great grace laid up for them. It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins.”
Another reason we believe in the existence of Purgatory is that the Church fathers believed and taught it.
“But of those who suffer temporary punishments after death, all are not doomed to those everlasting pains which are to follow that judgment; for to some, as we have already said, what is not remitted in this world is remitted in the next, that is, they are not punished with the eternal punishment of the world to come.” Is, they are not punished with the eternal punishment of the world to come.”
~Saint Augustine ~ City of God~
Saint Paul, in Colossians 1:22, tells us:
“….yet He has now reconciled you in His body of flesh through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach—”
The Butterfly Legend
For centuries, the butterfly has been a symbol of rebirth. In Christianity, it is a symbol of the resurrection.
There is a small town, in Mexico, where people believe butterflies to be souls. To that town, monarch butterflies migrate every year on and around the holiday known as the Day of the Dead or All Souls Day. They are seen as the returned souls of the deceased.
The Irish believe butterflies to be souls of the dead waiting to pass through purgatory. It is said that, when you see a butterfly in flight, an angel is close by. Perhaps guiding a soul through Purgatory into Heaven?
Mary Tends to the Souls in Purgatory
As always, we know we can depend on our Blessed Mother to ease our pain.
In her diary, Saint Faustina wrote that, in a vision, she saw Mary visiting the souls in Purgatory.
“I saw Our Lady visiting the souls in purgatory. The souls call her ‘The Star of the Sea.’ She brings them refreshment.”
In his book, the Glories of Mary, Saint Alphonsus Liguori tells us,
“Too happy are the servants of this most kind mother, since not only in this world they are aided by her, but also in purgatory they are assisted and comforted by her protection. For succor being there more needed, because they are in torment and cannot help themselves, so much the more does this mother of mercy strive to help them. St. Bernardine of Sienna says, that in that prison of souls who are spouses of Jesus Christ, Mary has a certain dominion and plenitude of power to relieve them, as well as deliver them from their pains.”
Our Lady, in her revelations to Saint Bridget, said: “I am the mother of all the souls in purgatory; and all the sufferings which they merit for the sins committed in life are every hour, while they remain there, alleviated in some measure by my prayers.”
Purgatory exists. Souls in Purgatory cannot pray for themselves but they can pray for us. Their only way of getting out of Purgatory and reaching the beatific vision is with our prayers. We must pray for the souls in Purgatory.
Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.
Marilyn Nash for Holyart.co.uk
In recent years, it seems like funerals and funeral homes have come to follow a standardized formula of ritualism or religion that everyone seems to know. There are distinct features that distinguish a Christian funeral home from a secular funeral home according to FuneralFide Christian Burial expert, Justin Searls.
There is often familiar organ music playing in the background. A select Scripture passage or reference is recited to the audience to bring comfort. Also, there are the family and other loved ones that speak on behalf of the departed and the closing benediction. These characteristics tend to define the standard funeral home and funeral service.
Three central factors set a Christian funeral home apart from its its secular counterpart:
- A Christian funeral home ushers in an atmosphere of celebration rather than a farewell.
Philippians 3: 20-21 (CSB) says “Our citizenship is in heaven, and we eagerly wait for a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ. He will transform the body of our humble condition into the likeness of his glorious body, by the power that enables him to subject everything to himself.
As Christ followers, we have the understanding that our brothers and sisters in Christ are not gone. We know that they are alive and are given a body of incorruption and glory in Christ.
- A Christian funeral home will emphasize biblical preaching based on the love of God from God’s Word rather than a regular speech.
Romans 8: 38-39 (CSB) says “For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
There is a supernatural feeling and presence in the atmosphere when the love of God is truly present. The love of God brings a peace from Heaven that knows no bounds and serves to satisfy the hearts of others.
- A Christian funeral home will be characterized by the hope of the Resurrection of Christ.
1 Thessalonians 4: 13-17 (CSB) says the following:
“We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, concerning those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve like the rest, who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, in the same way, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep.
For we say this to you by a word from the Lord: We who are still alive at the Lord’s coming will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep.
For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the archangel’s voice, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.
Then we who are still alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.”
The Resurrection of Jesus is the most important fact of the Christian faith that leads to eternal life. Without the Resurrection, we have no hope.
It’s evident that there are central characteristics that make a Christian funeral home stand out above the others. When one enters into a Christ-centered funeral home, that individual will feel the love of Christ and the peace that only comes in knowing that a loved one is still alive with a new and glorified body. Without Christ, there is no life.
About the Author
Justin Searls is a Christian professional writer, author, social commentator, ordained minister, and FuneralFide’s Christian aftercare contributor. He writes a weekly blog focusing on social issues in the Church and he has been published by multiple newspapers. Justin is happily married and lives with his wife in West Virginia.
Memorial headstones come in an array of shapes and sizes. If you’re wondering what headstones are made of and how they are made, then you’ve come to the right place. You’ll also learn about the best headstones and the average cost to have one made.
How Memorial Headstones Are Made
There are several steps involved when memorial stonemasons start making headstones, with the first steps consisting of cutting granite blocks from a quarry. After that, these blocks go to a manufacturer, where the blocks of granite are cut down into smaller blocks. After the slabs of granite have been prepared, a designer creates a blueprint of a headstone, which the customer will provide their input.
As for who makes memorial headstones, that would be stonemasons. These types of stonemasons typically only focus on creating headstones. This allows them to create highly detailed and high-quality memorials.
What Are Headstones Made Of?
Headstones can be made with an array of materials, but there are three types of rock that are commonly used. This includes slate, marble, and granite, as all three of those types of rock are durable, reliable and various finishes can be used on them. Sometimes gabbro and sandstone markers are used. Headstones that have been created with gabbro or sandstone markers stand out because they tend to be dark.
In the past, limestone was sometimes used to create headstones and even today some people prefer their headstones to be made from limestone. This is because limestone is appealing. The only downside to limestone is the material isn’t as durable as marble, slate or granite, which means if your headstone is made with it, then it may not last as long as headstones made with other types of rock.
The Best Headstones
The best headstones tend to be upright headstones and flat headstones. However, it really comes down to personal preference, and the good news is that all headstones can be customised to some extent or another. As a general rule of thumb, it’s a good idea to compare a few headstones and weigh the pros and cons of each before settling on one.
Also, the best material is marble. Marble headstones are durable and highly resistant to various weather elements. Not only that, but marble headstones tend to be very easy to clean and maintain.
The average cost for a memorial headstone in the UK is around £1,000 for an upright headstone. Larger headstones, such as kerbed ones, tend to average around £2,300. Bear in mind that many factors come into play when it comes to how much you’ll pay for a memorial headstone, such as the type of rock you want it made with, the stonemason performing the work, and what details you want to include on the stone.
Now you know more about how memorial headstones are made. If you plan on having a headstone made, then make sure you find a highly skilled stonemason to create it for you. They’ll be able to create your ideal headstone.
Cemeteries are the place where people do not have a smile on their face, but this place can also be beautiful. People have tried their best to make sure that you give a good experience. This is a place for a lot of different birds and wildlife and keeping it well maintained is a necessity. There are many gardens which is surprised by bringing beauty to the cemeteries. If you are curious, here are some of the places which can help ensure that you have the right experiences when it comes to cemeteries.
Il Cimitero Acattolico di Roma, Italy
This is a cemetery which has been in existence from the Roman Era. This was set aside by the pope to help in the burial of the non-catholic foreigners. This is the final resting ground of John Keats and Percy Shelly. There is also one of the most beautiful statues of the Angel of the Grief weeping over the Altar of Life.
Mirogoj Cemetery, Croatia
This was a cemetery which was constructed on the estate of the Ljudevit Gaj who was a 20th-century linguist. This cemetery is situated at the foot of Mt. Medvendnica. This cemetery was revamped by an Australian architect Hermann Bolle. He was inspired by the Neo-Renaissance arcade and is now filled with memorial statuary.
Gunnar Asplund and Sigurd Lewerentz were two of the most famous architects who collaborated to make this burial ground a bit more appealing. This was transformed as a former quarry into a beautiful site which has a lot of modest gravestones and can be seen absorbed in the forests and the meadows.
Reilig Odhran, Scotland
This is an Island Graveyard which is considered one of the most beautiful places and is the burial ground of many Scottish, Irish and even Norwegian Rulers. This is a Gaelic for Graveyard which lies beside saint Oran Chapel. This is home to many mysterious stones. The legend has it that when the stone wears down, the world is going to end.
Pere Lachaise, France
This is one of the revolutionary cemeteries which offered gravesite to anyone who could afford it. It is one of the most expensive places. Regardless of the price, it is one of the most popular spots. It is the resting place of some of the most famous people like Oscar Wilde, Jim Morrison, etc.
Highgate Cemetery, England
Highgate was a garden cemetery which was made as a place where the Londoners can escape the life of smoke and noise. It is one of the most beautiful places where people like Karl Marx and Douglas Adams lie. It was once a place which was growing weed today it is a scene to rejoice.
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