Lika Cap at Croatian funeral

The bonds of community and why they are needed at funerals

Secular funerals are in their infancy, a rejection of religion but, in my view, they are yet to evolve to properly deal with the emotional complexity of funerals which are needed by people not only to remember and express their devotion to a loved one but also to support those most affected, partially by acknowledging the bonds of community.

I am in awe of Croatian funerals for so comprehensively helping the living in a time of loss. Croatian funerals almost always involve the church but they also fully embrace what it means to be part of a community.   

The Lika cap is an important cultural symbol of the Lika Region in Croatia and is worn by men at funerals. So the act of handing out the caps to the men at the family home is an important signal of what is to come. For adolescent males, receiving the Lika cap is a rite of passage.