Dignity Memorial® providers help families personalize funeral services as a celebration of a person’s life
Today’s modern consumers have demanded that products and services change to meet their ever changing expectations and funeral services are no different. Many people no longer want the sad, somber funeral service they had for grandma years ago. Instead, it is an opportunity to bring family together to honour a loved one’s life.
In recent years, funeral services have transformed from a predominantly formal service, with religious music, scripture, prayers and little information regarding the life of the deceased, into a true celebration of a life fondly remembered.
“The key to turning a funeral into a celebration of the life lived is through personalization,” says Chris Marsh, representative of Dignity Memorial, a premier network of more than 1,600 funeral, cremation and cemetery service providers across North America. “This kind of personalization is really nothing new. In fact, it is a centuries-old practice that we have basically begun to rediscover.”
Marsh says that personalization not only helps relax the often oppressive atmosphere of most funeral services, but also encourages family, friends and visitors to share memories and relate to the personalized elements of the service or the items on display.
“At a funeral for a well-known concert pianist,” says Marsh, “the family opted to have a Steinway piano moved to the gallery of the funeral home. The florist created a huge display of white flowers cascading down from inside the piano onto a large carpeting of more flowers surrounding the piano.”
Marsh continues, “The funeral service for a cycling enthusiast included items such as a bicycle and various cycling medals next to the casket. During the cemetery service, members from the cycling club escorted the hearse and carried the casket from the cemetery gates to the gravesite.”
In addition to just creative decoration, other elements can help bring a personal touch. For example, music doesn’t have to be limited strictly to religious hymns. It can include the favorite music of the deceased. Photographs and even home videos also help pay tribute to a celebration of life.
By focusing the funeral service on those things the deceased enjoyed, as well as the experiences shared throughout his or her life, it encourages the sharing of stories and conversations of the deceased. In some instances, these conversations may even allow the family to learn special things about their loved one that they otherwise may have never known.
Overall, today’s funeral services are changing to meet the needs of a generation that has different ideas about life – and about death. Dignity Memorial® funeral, cremation and cemetery providers offer the compassion and experience to customize your services the way you want.
To help make planning your funeral as easy as possible and add a higher level of personalization, the Dignity Memorial® network has partnered with CARP to offer a free Personal Planning Guide for CARP members with valuable information about making your own arrangements, as well as helpful worksheets to get you started in the privacy of your own home.
For your free Personal Planning Guide and for more information on the benefits of preplanning and how CARP members can save $1,000 or more on their funeral and cemetery arrangements, call 1-866-668-1842 or visit the Dignity Memorial website.