Whether you’re grieving the loss of a loved one and need to make arrangements for their funeral, or you’re looking to start planning what you would like to happen at your funeral when you pass- we’ve got you covered. It can be an overwhelming thing to think about, and many of us prefer not to think about these times in our lives. If you’re feeling a bit lost, take a look through our guide on all the steps you need to take to plan a funeral, and what may be involved. Keep reading to learn more.
Coping With Grief
First off, if you’re responsible for planning a funeral for a loved one, it’s important you take care of yourself at this time too. If you’re struggling to cope with grief, seek mental health support and consider working with a therapist. They can help you to work through all the stages of grief and emotionally recover from a loss. Although planning a funeral is important, you should always place your mental health first. If you’re struggling to cope with the burden of planning the funeral, try and establish if anybody else could take over the responsibility for you.
Choosing The Funeral Home
The first thing you need to arrange is which funeral home the funeral will take place at. This will allow you to then arrange many other aspects of the funeral and begin the process. Choose somewhere, if possible, that is conveniently located for you and other family members and guests. Look into what services the funeral homes near you offer and whether these would meet your needs.
Transportation Of The Body
Once you’ve decided on the funeral home. The next step is the transportation of the body to the funeral home. If your loved one has passed away in a hospital or medical facility, they will arrange this for you so will just need the details of the funeral home. However, if they passed away outside of a medical setting you will need to contact a coroner to arrange the transportation of the body. Depending on whether or not the body requires an autopsy, it will then be transported directly to the funeral home of choice.
Registration Of Death
The forms for registration of death can be found and completed online. They need to be submitted to the County Recorder, you can find out who this is online. This document needs to be signed off by the County Recorder before the funeral for burial or cremation to occur. When this is completed you’ll then receive the death certificate. It’s worth asking for multiple copies of this as you will need it to receive payouts from any life insurance policies and to access bank accounts owned by the deceased.
Letting Family And Friends Know Of The Passing
One of the most difficult jobs after the passing of a loved one is having to contact other family members and friends to inform them. It can be the last thing you feel like doing when you’re already struggling with grief. Make sure you’ve got support from your family and friends, and if people offer to help, don’t feel guilty about accepting it. Try to think if there is anyone that your loved one would want to be contacted in particular.
Writing An Obituary
An obituary is a public announcement informing people of a person’s passing. If you’re writing it yourself it will need to include the details of your loved one and the time of their passing. You can include less or more detail depending on your preferences. It will also give people the opportunity to find the details for where and when the funeral will take place if it is a public funeral, and they wish to attend.
Send Out Invitations
Once you have plans for where and when the funeral will be taking place, you can start sending out invitations for guests to the funeral. You can also choose to have a public funeral and list the details for the funeral in an obituary in the local newspaper and online. This way anybody missed from the invitations that want to attend the funeral will be able to.
Cremation And Burial
Depending on your loved one’s wishes or your own preferences, you will need to decide on whether there will be a burial or cremation. Baldwin Brothers Funeral and Cremation Society offer personalized cremation and funeral services tailored to your wishes. You can choose urns, caskets, and gravestones online, and have them personalized and delivered to the funeral home directly.
Choosing People To Be Involved In The Service
You can choose people to be involved in certain aspects of the funeral service, such as readings and poems, and prayers. You may find that these people will come forward and ask to perform a certain reading, but you may also have to approach them gently about it. Try to be considerate of people’s feelings and remember they might not be comfortable speaking in front of others, especially when they are grieving. If it’s a family member who will be carrying out a reading, discuss it within the family to establish who will be carrying out readings and when to prepare themselves.
Programs For The Service
Once you have all the details for the day finalized, you can order the programs. These will list the order of events for the funeral service for guests to follow what happens and when. If there are particular songs or hymns that your loved one would favor, you can include the details for these for guests to sing along with.
Gatherings After the Funeral Service
You also need to consider whether you will be holding a gathering for some of the guests after the funeral service has taken place. If so, look into catering services to provide food and refreshments. You could prepare the food yourself or with other family members, but catering services can help to take some of the pressure off you on the day. Take time to reflect on what you could include in the gathering that would help to reflect the life and legacy of your loved one.