What You Need to Know When Planning A Memorial Service

Man with his hand on casket

Over the next several weeks, we will be presenting a blog series focusing on planning a memorial service. Hilgenfeld Mortuary’s knowledgeable staff are here to guide your family every step of the way as you face numerous decisions on how best to memorialize your loved one. Each blog will provide insight on a certain aspect of the event including the location, service leader, service program and extras such as flowers, soloists, receptions, etc. We hope this series will aid you in your planning during a very difficult time.

First to consider is the style or tone of the service. Do you want a formal service with a set program including speakers, hymns and readings, or something more informal featuring an impromptu service in a park or backyard? Is religion an important factor or are you looking for a secular event? Are children included or will only adults be invited? Memorial service planners, most often families of the decedent, may disagree on some of these issues. This is where pre-planning can play an important role. Pre-planned arrangements most often include the tone of the service desired by the loved one, including outlining where the service should be held, what music should be included and sometimes even a list of those to invite.

If there has been no preplanning or discussion prior to the passing, family members will need to make compromises to best reflect the personality of their loved one. Once the overall style has been set, families will have a guide map to follow as they move forward on other decisions such as location, service leader and what to include in the program.

Next blog: Choosing The Right Location