Tips for Planning Your Own Living Funeral

We live in a time where customization and tradition are forever merging and planning your eternal rest is one of the most intimate and personal decisions you will ever make. It would not surprise me if your memories of the funerals of loved one’s past, are of a sombre, solemn and sad model. Those funerals reflected the wishes of the people that were planning those funerals, but it does not have to be that way.

There are many ways you may plan the funeral/celebration of the life of a loved one; you may add a favourite song, a special poem, a theme that reflects the passion of the person’s life, the use of certain colours, where the funeral will be held and many others that reflect the life of the deceased.

Your decision will also be affected by whichever faith you are a member of or whichever cultural belief system you hold dear. The important thing to know is that this is your funeral and that you have the right to choose to plan it as you would like your life to be celebrated. We live in a time where it is appropriate to celebrate life while mourning and grieving; this is not disrespectful. The joy and sorrow that we feel when someone we love has died is a healthy balance for us to feel.

You will have many choices in planning your happy funeral. You will be offered many products and services ranging from; funeral service options – chapel, graveside, at sea, coral reef – to caskets, urns, above ground, in ground or cremation services. Our office works with distinguished professionals in the field of Funeral Service who will help you design a unique and special commemoration to the person whose funeral you are planning.

Some of the options and benefits you can choose from in making either your funeral plans or the plans of a loved one include:

Pre Planning all of your funeral

Knowing that you are going to die soon, it can be helpful to discuss with the people close to you your ideas and wishes for when that time comes. An end of life ceremony is an alternative to a funeral service. This will probably be a difficult and emotional conversation, but by sharing how you would like your funeral service to be, including music choices and your own words, this will often take away difficult decisions later on. Letting those people know what you want and how also means that options can be explored before that day comes which may save on time and cost.

An alternative is a ‘living funeral’ where a gathering is organised, and your memories and life adventures and happenings are celebrated with the people who often form part of them. Many have enjoyed the chance to have all their friends with them together.

Hiring a Civil Celebrant can help you with pre-planning your end of life ceremony or living funeral.

Some things you can do after the funeral to help you and the bereaved feel better

Stay in touch with adult children, make a donation in memory of the deceased, send a handwritten note, go to a support group meeting with the person, help with daily house chores – shopping, cleaning,etc., provide transportation, take the kids to the movies, email messages of love and support, invite the survivor to join you in walking, exercise or activity, visit the grave with the survivor and whatever else you can think of. Be a friend, accept their right to grieve as they need to and listen to their pain.

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