How to plan a memorable Funeral for a Loved One

January 9, 2021
Casket with pink and white flower wreath
end of life planning
anticipate life
supporting others
Bernadette Fulton

Planning a Funeral is not a very cheerful subject to talk about, is it? But the fact is that at some point in our lives most of us will have to plan a funeral for a loved one.

We understand this reality. And we know that if the organising task one day falls to us, we will want the funeral service to reflect the wishes of our loved one as much as possible.

How will I know what they would have wanted?

The best way to prepare for this eventuality is to discuss their funeral wishes with them in advance. Ask your loved ones if they have thought about this aspect of their end of life planning.

We understand that it’s a hard conversation to start and that you worry it might cause distress and upset. But by broaching the subject respectfully and gently with loved ones  you can break down barriers and have a meaningful shared discussion.

Anticipate Life helps you to start this conversation process. We can provide a series of explainer videos, informative emails and checklists for both you and your loved ones. These enable you to deal with the subject in a sensitive and caring way.

By making their funeral wishes and preferences clear now, your loved ones can ensure that you will have the information you need to make the arrangements they want. At some point making these choices may be beyond their control so having the discussions now is important.

What arrangements will I need to make?

A funeral is not a subject we like to discuss very much so it may come as a surprise to learn that planning a funeral requires a number of decisions.

Burial or cremation?  Some people have a clear preference but others may not have given it much thought.

You will need to choose a funeral provider. And make decisions about a casket, tombstone or plaque, inscription, and a final resting place.

When it comes to planning the funeral service itself, what sort of service will be appropriate? Will you have a religious service? Do you need to arrange for a celebrant? Would your loved one have wanted a specific song, or reading, or any other personalised aspect included in the proceedings?

Who will you need to notify and do you have the necessary contact details?

After you discuss these questions with your loved ones, their personal last wishes and other important life information can be stored in Anticipate Life’s secure web app. This ensures that it will be available when needed.

You may find to your surprise that your loved ones have already thought about some of their funeral decisions. With some gentle prompting, after you introduce the subject, they may be happy to share their thoughts and wishes with you.