Whether a funeral is formal or informal, religious or civil, intimate or public, its purpose is to remember the person who has died, to celebrate their life, and to say goodbye to them. There’s no right or wrong way to hold a funeral: what matters is that you create a funeral that suits the person who has died, and that feels right to you.
The person who has died may have told you the kind of funeral they would like in a will or letter, in a funeral plan, or in person. You don’t need to follow every wish to the letter, but their guidance will help you plan a funeral that reflects the person they were, and comforts the people left behind.
If you have chosen a religious service, your minister will explain the order of service to you, which will depend on your faith. In many faiths there is a traditional service, although you may be able to introduce your own elements, such as music or readings.
Many non-religious funerals open with music and a welcome or introduction from the celebrant. After this, you have an opportunity to reflect on the life of the person who has died, and people often include music, readings and tributes. Finally, the celebrant commits the deceased and after a final reading the funeral ends, often with music.
Here are some elements that people combine to create a funeral ceremony:
Prayers | Hymns | Songs | Live music | Recorded music | Slide show | Pictures | Silence | Dancing | Readings | Poems | Welcome | Committal | Goodbye | Tributes
Our funeral directors are here to help you, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. If you’re unsure about what to do next, pick up the phone to your local funeral director and we’ll be there for you with our years of experience and understanding.