Memorial Services are a popular choice for many people. Most families who choose a memorial service will do so in lieu or, or instead of a traditional funeral, or in some cases a memorial service is held long after the death and traditional funeral. If you are considering a memorial service for your own funeral or for that for a loved one you will need to consider a number of things including but not limited to: will it be formal or casual, who will run or MC the service, how long of a service will it be, and of course when would you want to have the service.
Many memorial services will occur in the chapel area of the funeral home itself after the deceased has been cremated. In this case there is usually only the ashes in an urn present with photos of the person. If this is the case the service is usually a formal service where people attend wearing suits or other formal attire. If this service is happening a long or short time after the death you might still bring photos and memories of the person, but you can choose a favorite spot where your loved one liked to be; for example his or her local pub, or a restaurant they liked, or even a sporting venue. This type of memorial service is usually more casual and relaxed.
Choosing the person to run the service can be a difficult decision. If you are having the service the same day or shortly after the loss of the loved one you might consider hiring the services of a professional. There are ministers and religious clergy of all denominations who are available for such services. If you choose to have the memorial shortly after or immediately after the loss it is likely that any of his or her close friends and family members will be too distraught to speak or help with the direction of the service. If you have decided to wait until a later point to have the memorial service it is likely that you, or your loved ones best friends will be able to offer more assistance and maybe even host the event for you.
The length of the service can be affected by a number of factors including cost, location, number of guests etc. If you know your loved one will draw a crowd of supporters and people who wish to speak at their memorial service it might be wise to choose a larger public venue like a pub or restaurant. In many cases their favorite pub will allow you to use their facilities free of charge as long as people are buying from their establishment. If you are planning on a smaller more intimate gathering you might rent a small space like a hall, or a small religious building that was of importance to the deceased. When you are renting a hall its usually rented by the hour so the smaller the better in this case.
When to have the service can depend on a number of factors. In some of the northern states it might be required to wait until spring to bury the remains of a loved one because of frozen ground, if this is the case a nice memorial by their graveside is a nice touch. There are some other cases where the burials do not occur until quite a long while after the death. Your funeral director and your loved ones doctors will have explained these factors to you if they were in fact the case.
A memorial service is a great way to keep your loved ones memory alive in all that knew him or her, your funeral director can help you plan and execute a classy, timely, and appropriate memorial for yourself or your loved one.