A ‘celebration of life’ funeral is a colorful way to remember someone after they have passed.
While it’s fine to grieve for someone who has left this world, a celebration of life ceremony is about focusing on the life of the departed by sharing positive memories in a cheerful tone. You can create colorful ones on Memories website.
Is celebration of life a non-religious event?
A celebration of life ceremony doesn’t mean the event can’t be religious, it’s more about creating a more lively environment where grievers can express their gratitude for a life well-lived – it could still involve a priest of a church.
A more contemporary funeral service may include uplifting or modern music. There could be a lot of laughter and storytelling. The key idea behind the celebration of life is to shift the focus from the death of a person to the happiness that person brought in the lives of others.
Who can hold a celebration of life funeral?
A friend or family member can help a funeral director arrange the celebration of life ceremony. There needs to be a person who conducts the funeral and introduces others taking part, although they do not have to be a priest.
You could take help from a celebrant – professionals who help the family of the deceased design a service. The service can be customized to meet the cultural, spiritual or religious needs of the person. The order of the service must also be designed around the interests of the deceased.
Some special family members can also come forward with short speeches. People could talk about the deceased’s best qualities, retell their life story or express how much they are missed. If your loved one had a keen eye for poems and literature, you could read out some extracts from their most treasured books or even their own work.
Where can you hold a celebration of life?
You can use a location provided by the funeral home to hold the celebration of life ceremony or you can also organize it to take place somewhere that was special for the person who has passed.
If they were enthusiastic about gardening, you could hold the ceremony in a park or you decorate a venue with their favorite flowers. You can even arrange the grievers to let off butterflies for that added touch.
The celebration of life gathering can be held like any other social event – set up in your home, in the local community hall, a restaurant or pub. As long as your selected place is big enough to accommodate the invitees, a celebration of life funeral can be held practically anywhere.
If you have a large open area, you could also gather outside for a nighttime event. A nice touch could be to release eco-friendly sky lanterns in the dark night and mark the journey of your loved one to the heavens.
Friends and family could also mark their lanterns with personal messages and wishes before lifting the lantern off in the sky – sending messages into the clouds for the one you miss.
Ideas for a celebration of life funeral
Make an online memorial or photo display
An online memorial is an excellent way to ensure the departed will be remembered, with the platforms providing a private and secure space where friends and family can visit to share photos, videos and stories of the one who has passed.
There is comfort in making an online memorial because you know the page will last forever and it will help future generations learn more about your family history. Include content that best highlights the deceased’s hobbies and personality – ask friends to contribute as well.
Nothing can fill the gaping hole in your heart that your loved one has left behind, but creating an online memorial can help you keep them alive in your memoires. Building it together at a celebration of life ceremony could also be a great way to bond and remember.
Plant a memorial plant
By planting a memorial tree, you essentially create a living monument in the name of a loved one. This is a brilliant way of remembering someone eternally. Plus, our environment also benefits from this noble initiative.
The friends and family of the deceased can visit the tree anytime they miss his/her presence. You could even create a plaque to place at the bottom of the tree, so anyone who visits will have a constant reminder of the lost loved one.
Some seed packets could also be included as memorial handouts for the guests. They could sow those seeds at their homes and keep remembering your loved one forever. Pick their favourite plant and know you are keeping them in mind whenever you see it.
Dedicate a star
There are many gift companies that offer packages to name a star. You get a certificate of a star called after your loved one’s name, and telescopic coordinates to find it in the sky. You can assemble your friends and family and arrange an after dark party to remember the deceased.
Looking for your loved one’s star can be a creative tribute and an experience unlike any other.
Create memory cards and play a video montage
The guests gathered for the celebration of life funeral can create memory cards for the person who is no more. They can write their favorite memory or a special message for them. The cards can be collected and kept securely in a memory box for upcoming generations to read.
Using the photos and videos of your loved one, you can also create a video montage. You could ask friends to contribute to the video with some pictures of their own. Include the favorite tunes of the deceased to make it even more personalized.
Your guests speaking a few heart-warming sentences for the lost one would also create a memorable tribute. The video can be displayed after the celebration of life ceremony.