The 5 Essentials For An Uplifting Memorial Service
It’s a terrible thing to lose a loved one, but with a little advanced planning, you might just find yourself turning tears into smiles by celebrating their life and remembering the good times. Here are five essentials for a respectful but ultimately uplifting memorial service.
1: Choose A Beautiful Location
Many families choose to hold memorial services directly at the funeral home, but that doesn’t have to be your only option. You can also host them at churches, chapels, gardens or anywhere that held a special meaning for the deceased. Just make sure to book your venue well in advance to ensure privacy and respect for your loved one’s last farewell.
2: Offer Handouts for Remembrance
A nice color picture can be photocopied and distributed among the mourners so everyone will have something of the deceased to remember them by. It also isn’t uncommon for families to hand out flowers, pins or rubber bracelets as a symbol of love and solidarity. The person may be gone, but their influence lives on among those who knew them.
3: Prepare Your Anecdotes in Advance
With emotions running high, it’s all too easy to blurt out something inappropriate or ill-suited for a memorial service. Pick your stories before you share them with others, focusing on gentle, inoffensive things like childhood mishaps or well-known quirks. You’ll bring a little levity to the service without disrespecting the deceased or making any mourners upset.
4: Give Back To The Community
Let your loved one live forever through memorial donations to local hospitals, charities and nonprofit groups. Ask everyone to chip in and make it possible. Your funeral home can help set it up, often at no greater cost than their name included on the donation card, ie “In loving memory of Sandra Smith, the Milton Funeral Home welcomes donations for the Children’s Art Showcase.”
5: End On A Positive Note
Celebrate a life well-lived by reminding everyone of what the deceased stood for and what they would want their loved ones to do now. If they were a sweet, loving soul, tell everyone to cherish each other and never take anything for granted. If they were a fiery, passionate person, stress to the crowd that you only live once and that this passing is a reminder to embrace each day with gratitude and zeal. Let your memorial service end with hope, not sorrow.
Saying goodbye is never easy, but these tips can help you arrange a compassionate, uplifting memorial service worthy of the one you’ve lost. Our condolences, and good luck.