When is the Best Time to Plan Your Funeral? Before You Need It.
Can you imagine planning a wedding in just a few days? Or any major celebration for that matter? Why leave the ultimate celebration of your life to the last minute?
By planning your service in advance, you can design and specify the exact type of service you’d like, so that your friends and family can celebrate you as you would like them to. And by letting your family know how you'd like your funeral or memorial service to be, they'll have fewer complicated decisions to make during a difficult and emotional time. It’s a selfless gift your family will be sure to appreciate.
Making funeral arrangements can require as many as 125 decisions. That’s no small task for people who are grieving and under extreme emotional stress. Pre-planning allows you to personalize virtually aspect of your funeral or memorial service, if you wish, or you can simply provide guidelines for creating a service that feels special to you. When planning the details of your service, think about the way you’d like it to look, feel, and flow. Many people want their funerals to be celebrations of life rather than sad affairs, so they opt to include uplifting music, colorful flowers, and inspirational readings. Other people prefer their funerals to highlight their personal interests and achievements, and so they request the eulogists to speak on specific topics or to choose readings that reflect personal philosophies.
Many elements of a funeral or memorial service can be planned in advance. Some of the things you might make decisions about include:
- Whether you would prefer to be buried or cremated
- Having a viewing, visitation, or wake before your service
- The type of service (funeral service, graveside service, or memorial service)
- The service location
- Who you’d like to officiate your service
- Who you’d like to serve as pallbearers
- People to deliver eulogies
- Readings, prayers, or poems for people to read
- Music, hymns, or songs
- The type of flowers or decorations you’d like to have
- Having a post-service reception or gathering, and planning that event
- The guest list for your service
- If you want guests to donate to a charity in your name, and coordinating with the charity or setting up a foundation
Pre-planning enables you to have a truly personalized service that reflects your styles and desires, creating a very memorable celebration of your life, just as you would like it to be. And of course, planning your service ahead of time will bring tremendous peace of mind to your loved ones. Your thoughtful gift of a pre-planned funeral will ease their pain, enable them to find closure, and move them towards healing.