Leaving a Legacy
“What a weight to have lifted off our shoulders to finally start taking care of our arrangements. This is all to keep our son, and each other, from having to make hard decisions when either of us passes away.”
- Bill, 64, & Carol, 63, R.
Whether you’re planning for yourself or for a loved one, the funeral service is one of the most important elements of a person’s final arrangements. With the opportunity for great personalization, the funeral service can truly reflect the uniqueness of your legacy.
The funeral or memorial service fills an important role. It can:
The Dignity Memorial® network’s Jewish funeral providers understand the struggle to keep the Jewish faith and its traditions alive, as well as the balance between tradition and Jewish contemporary life. With respect for Orthodox, Conservative and Reform Judaism, Dignity Memorial funeral providers are knowledgeable and experienced in providing the Jewish funeral services and customs that are important to you and your family.
So what is a funeral? In general terms, a funeral is a gathering of family and friends after the death of a loved one that allows them the opportunity to mourn, support each other and pay tribute to the life of the deceased. It often consists of one or more of the following components:
A formal or informal ceremony or ritual prior to burial, a funeral service often provides a sense of closure to family and friends. Although Jewish custom may influence some elements of a funeral service, you may want to personalize other elements of the service. At a funeral service, the casket may or may not be present.
At a memorial service, a casket is usually not present. Otherwise similar to a funeral service, a memorial service gives family and friends a time to come together in your memory and honor your legacy.
As its name implies, a graveside service may be held at the grave site just prior to burial of a casket, and usually consists of final remarks, prayers or memories, or the rendering of military funeral honors if appropriate. The service may occur after or in place of a funeral service.
There’s no one, right way to plan a funeral service. Dignity Memorial® providers believe that each funeral should be as unique and memorable as the life it honors. Consider these examples of unique services:
When planning your own funeral service in advance, think about the way you want to be remembered. Perhaps these examples will spark an idea of how you can personalize your own funeral service.
Regardless of the service you choose to include in your funeral plan, you can personalize it in almost any way imaginable. For example, just consider the following questions:
Where should the funeral be held? At your temple or synagogue? At the JCC? At the funeral home?
Who should officiate the service? Your local rabbi, cantor or other officiant?
Will your service adhere to the traditions of Jewish custom, or be more relaxed?
Do you want a eulogy, and who should deliver it?
What music should be played?
What readings would you like to have read?
Is there a special poem you’d like shared with the guests?
Are there any special photographs or other memorabilia you would like displayed?
Should the décor reflect a particular hobby or interest of yours, such as gardening or music?
Is there a particular epitaph you want on your headstone or marker?
Should there be refreshments served after the service?
Ready to make your funeral plans today? Use our free online planning tool to start planning now. You can make your selections online and record the ways you’d like to personalize your service. Plus, you can even save your plan while it’s in progress, come back to finish it or add more details later, and share it with family and friends when you’re done.
Or, record all your choices for personalized funeral and cemetery services in our convenient Personal Planning Guide. To request your free copy, contact a Dignity Memorial provider near you, click here to request one online, or call 800-34-DIGNITY.
The Dignity Memorial network: North America’s leading funeral homes and cemeteries, united to bring you the services you need when it matters most.