I’ve visited Forest Lawn Cemetery in Glendale, and it’s a beautiful spot with quaint chapels, prayer gardens, and the fabulous painting of the crucifixion of Christ displayed in a churchlike theater on the crest of the hill (it’s the largest oil painting in the world, and worth a visit). But I’m amazed at the excess that would spend a million dollars for a funeral there. That’s more than the net worth of most Americans. According to TMZ, to slide Michael Jackson into his slot in the mausoleum, it cost, in dollars:
- 175,000 – Police support
- 590,000 – Internment
- 88,500 – Mausoleum upkeep
- 176,000 – Private security, lighting, and to rent a baby grand piano
- 3,600 – Framing a photo of Michael to place beside the casket
- 1,975 – Wardrobe for the family
- 125 – The flower van.
Personally, I think the flower van people undercharged for their services, but the framing people made up for it. But the overlooked fact is that Michael was just as dead after the million dollars was spent as he was before. It’s not the cost of our funerals but the quality of our lives that counts. It’s not the fame of our name but the name of our Lord that makes the difference in eternity. Better to die in Christ and be buried in Potter’s Field than to tumble into eternity without Him and be buried in a shrine.