I posted yesterday about attending my friend’s Celebration of Life. I sometimes forget there are many out there with different traditions from different countries. I was asked just what is a Celebration of Life. This is the best way I know how to explain.
In recent years, funeral services have evolved from formal, structured ceremonies with little or no information regarding the life of the deceased to a personalized celebration of a life remembered. The key to turning a funeral into a celebration of life is planning a customized gathering that is representative of the departed’s personality. Nearly every part of the event can be personalized these days, including the readings, music, displays, venue and sometimes food.
These personalized memorials are warmer, more intimate gatherings that encourage family and friends to reflect on the person and all the things they enjoyed in life rather than focus solely on their absence. Personal touches with a less formal atmosphere also help friends and loved ones feel more comfortable with sharing memories of the departed.
A slideshow of the lost loved one is a very personal touch. This was used at my friend’s service, along with her favorite songs played. Her grandson and son-in-law also said a few words about her. They shared their love as well as a few funny stories. They also served dinner afterwards. Each service is different, you can make it the way you want to, no rules.
Having a Celebration of Life instead of the traditional funeral seems to lighten the mood a little. It is still very sad and many emotions, of course, but just a little different way of remembering your loved one. It is done more often when the body is cremated. And I believe it is important for the family to remember they have choices.
Sharing the flowers again I took to my friend days before she passed. She loved all flowers and always had a smile for everyone.
Recent posts about losing my friend…
365 Photos Challenge Day 166.
I agree, and have heard that many times. My dad did not want a funeral, he wanted a BBQ. He got it.
We should send flowers more often and just because. We should do kinder things often just because. In that way there will be no regrets when our loved ones move on to a different dimension. We would have fulfilled each and every moment.
You are right, and I hand delivered these to her right next door, so glad before she died she was able to enjoy them. Regrets are the worst to live with.
I think that’s a very good way to commemorate the life of those who have gone. Especially by revealing how this beloved person has colored and is meaningful in life.
I am reminded of The Last Samurai movie with starring Tom Cruise who plays as Capt. Nathan Algren who answered the Emperor’s question about how the last Samurai died ‘”I’ll tell you how he lives.”
I just like the sound of Celebration of Life instead of funeral. That is a great quote Albert.
I myself agree with that point of view, and it is far more interesting than to speak of grief, even though it belongs to the abandoned, but not to those who have set out for higher consciousness.
I could not have said it better, thank you for your continued encouragement and support.
You’re welcome, Carol. Always happy to share support.
Celebrating life is an amazing way to remember the person. Thanks for sharing this Carol~
I completely agree, thank you for reading Doc.
I know one of the things my grandfather always said was “always remember to smile.”
Yes my Dad always told me that, thanks for the reminder. 🙂
It is amazing how smart father’s were once. 🙂 Never, smart in the now and then, but in tomorrow dad’s are always the smartest.
I am sure she will be happy with this floral arrangement. c”,)
Yes she was before she died.
I am really sorry for your loss. I am sure she is in good hand now. c”,)
Beautiful post that should help anyone that would want to plan a celebration of life event. Very inspirational Carol!
Thank you LaJenna, I tried explaining the best I could.
A wish fulfilled by you to have lovely flowers at the funeral.
I actually gave these to her before she died, she loved them.
This is a wonderful perspective and idea! It’s always hard to lose someone you love, but remembering them and celebrating their life is very important.
Absolutely Ellie. Anything to make it easier on the family is the way to go.
i had a coworker named David who died of cancer very young. The Executive Director of our agency held a memorial breakfast where omelettes were cooked to order for all the employees because it was David’s favorite thing to cook. It did lighten the mood and made it easier for everyone to share memories of him.
That is a great thing to do, thanks for sharing Paul.
Very nicely explained, Carol Maybe this lot here will do that for me when I go 🙂
Thanks Norman, it is a nice way to be remembered.
Yes, I had a celebration of life at my husbands funeral. Although a sad time, it was nice also to celebrate his life. They are lovely flowers Carol.
Sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing. It is difficult no matter what but the little things always help.
Beautiful bouquet flowers full of harmonious colors.Thank you.
She once told me she wanted flowers before she died not at her funeral! So she got them.