Planning a funeral service can help you and your family heal after the loss of a loved one. The more details you have planned out in advance, the easier it will be to get through this difficult time. Here’s what you need to know about planning a funeral service for your loved ones:
Do you need to pre-plan the funeral?
Pre-planning your funeral is a good idea for many reasons. You can save money and make the process easier on your loved ones. And by understanding what choices are available, you can feel more confident in your decisions. This also lets you be actively involved in the process.
A pre-planned funeral allows you to have peace of mind since you’ve already planned everything. For instance, will there be flowers or music at the service? Should you select songs for certain parts of the ceremony? The plan is already complete and you don’t need to worry about these questions.
Pre-planning also lets you choose whether cremation should take place before or after internment — or even both!
What are the disposition wishes of your loved ones?
Disposition instructions are the wishes of your loved ones regarding to what happens to their body after death. You can use them to help you plan their funeral service. It’s important that you know these instructions. After all, if you don’t follow these instructions, it may cause additional stress for both you and your loved ones. Its also important to ask the following questions:
Why is it important to know your loved one’s disposition wishes?
How do I find out my loved one’s disposition wishes?
What happens if my loved one changes their mind about the disposition of their body?
Who plays a role in the funeral?
Many people can play an important role in our loved one’s funeral. Let’s look at some examples.
Choosing the officiant
An officiant will lead the ceremony. This person usually is someone trained to lead respectful, engaging ceremonies. Moreover, the officiant could be someone close to you and your loved one, such as a family member or friend. If none of these options are available, you can also hire someone for this purpose.
Speeches and eulogies
Many people find comfort in hearing from others at their loved one’s funeral or memorial service. Speeches from friends and family members are common components of funerals. After all they give attendees an opportunity to celebrate the life of the deceased person and share fond memories. These speakers may keep their speeches short and emotional— they’re still mourning themselves!
Pallbearers carry the casket at a funeral, so it’s important that your pallbearers are strong enough to perform this task. You can read our article about choosing the right people for this job here.
When is the funeral held and where?
The funeral service should take place as soon as possible after the death. Have a talk with your loved ones about what their wishes are for the funeral. Are you having a visitation or viewing before the funeral? This is something that you needs to decide in advance. The visitation or viewing could take place in either a church or a funeral home. It can also happen at any time of day or night, depending on your family’s preferences and schedule.
What is the best funeral type for your loved one?
Before you plan your loved one’s funeral service, ask yourself how you want them to be remembered. Do you want it to be a formal ceremony or an informal one? What type will best reflect the personality of their life?
The most common types of funerals include:
Traditional – This is the most common type of funeral. It usually includes a service at a church with an officiant and choir, and a burial or cremation after that. It can also include pallbearers and clergy members.
Religious – This involves religious rites that are specific to a certain religion or denomination. It often takes place in a place of worship with clergy members leading prayers or hymns. They may also be conducting rituals of that religion.
What should you include in the service?
You may want to include a photo of the deceased in your program. Not only will this help attendees know who they’re looking at, but it can also be part of the service. For example, you can put it up on a projector and have everyone say good-bye one last time.
A short biography of the deceased is another helpful addition that allows attendees to learn more about their loved one. You could include things such as their education level and occupation, but also any hobbies or interests. Basically, anything that helped shape them into who they were.
Is someone willing to give a eulogy about your loved one during their funeral service? Great, this can be another great way for people attending to get an idea of who he or she was before passing away (or during). A eulogy typically offers an opportunity for someone close with details regarding how much they’ve accomplished in life. And sometimes, it even adds to what type of person they were outside work/family commitments!
The funeral service is an important part of healing
It’s a time to say goodbye to your loved one, and it’s also a time for celebration. You can share memories of the person who has died — what they were like and what you will miss about them.
You have a lot of decisions to make when planning a funeral, but you don’t need to do it all by yourself. Talk with family members, friends, or other people in your community who have had similar experiences.
Planning a funeral can be complicated and exhausting. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the process, we hope this article gave you some useful tips on how to begin. Remember that your loved ones will always be with you in spirit and their memory will live on through stories told about them.
Not knowing your loved ones’ funeral wishes is perhaps the greatest challenge you may face. You can easily solve that by getting a free Myend account for your loved ones. Filling out their funeral plan could even be an activity you undertake together.