Memorial Services and Funerals
“To live in the hearts of others is never to die.”
Death is a life passage we share with the family and friends of the deceased. We are saddened by this loss. Hope Unitarian Church is honored to provide memorial services for its members.
The Memorial Service is a religious celebration of the life of the deceased — and of life itself. The service is for anyone of any theological or philosophical persuasion (or none) since all are welcome at Hope Unitarian Church. The last rites mark the dignity and mystery of what we call death. They celebrate the life of the deceased. These guidelines are not meant to detract from our reverence for life and death but to give them the fullest expression possible.
A Hope Memorial Service offers a personalized ceremony to honor a person’s life journey. The power of well-spoken words and live music can help heal the grief of those left behind. Each ceremony is a creation developed by the survivors and the minister together using liturgical elements meaningful to those involved. The result is an honoring and celebrating of the deceased’s life and the blessing of what it is that gives meaning and substance to our lives going forward.
Usually, a Memorial Service is held after burial or cremation. There are rare occasions when a Memorial service is conducted before interment. A casket is never present at a Memorial Service. If requested, the Minister can meet with the family at home or at the graveside for a brief, private committal instead of the more formal Memorial Service held at the Church following burial or cremation.
Make Your Wishes Known
Please talk with our minister about your final wishes regarding end-of-life decisions and the details of your own Memorial Service. There are forms available at the church office. After you fill them out, they will be kept in a locked drawer.
Use of the Facilities
Our minister meets with the family and presides over the memorial. No charge is made for the use of the church facilities by pledging members of Hope Unitarian Church. Fees for non-members are determined at the time of making service arrangements and should be paid in full prior to the service.
All ushering is done by members of Hope or persons appointed by the family of the deceased from their personal friends and relatives, not by funeral directors. Members of the church, families or friends may also tend to the signing of the guest book in the foyer prior to the service. Only live music is played during the service and must be approved by the Minister and the church musicians. Within the Sanctuary, the family provides a single floral arrangement.