Memorial Service Checklist

If you are planning to hold a memorial service, you may be overwhelmed by all the information that needs to be gathered and the arrangements that need to be made. If you’re engaging us, we will handle these details, but some families prefer to arrange the event themselves. Either way, we hope to simplify the process by providing you with a thorough checklist, guaranteed to guide you through the planning process.

For the Service

  • Decide on the tone of your service (i.e. religious, humanistic, celebration of life)
  • Choose location/time/date
  • Decide who will be officiating
  • Plan the order of the service (what happens and when)
  • Assign responsibilities to anyone helping (ushers, readers, singers etc.)
  • Decide how the family will process/recess and where they will be seated
  • Designate an announcer to keep everything moving
  • Plan the décor, including floral arrangements and any photographs or collages
  • Organize a run-through to make sure everyone knows what they are doing
  • Prepare any media elements (video, music etc.)

For the Reception

  • Reserve any facilities to be used
  • Choose and book a caterer or designate who will be preparing food
  • Notify all invitees of the reception time, date, dress code and expectations
  • Organize any performances/readings

Scattering of Ashes

Although a memorial does not have to include the scattering of ashes, some families choose to include this as part of their memorial service. If that is the case, you will need to decide where this will be done and invite anyone with whom you wish to share this deeply personal experience. If you’re doing this on your own, please feel free to contact us to learn where you can legally scatter cremated remains.

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