After the funeral home has contacted me, they email the details of the deceased. DOB, Date of death age and next of kin and if different whoever the client is paying for the service and they become the point of contact. Note: instructions and final say so re changes to the service is from that person only.
I will then contact the designated person and arrange a time to come and visit. In the meantime, I would ask you to think about how you would like the service conducted and what music you want, any reading or tributes from other family members etc ready for when I come to your house. (During Covid-19 pandemic I have a questionnaire I email to you along with my business card and leaflet, that I would have brought with me to your visit).
There I would ask what you have decided on how you would like the service conducted and I would listen attentively as everyone present tells me funny stories and accolades about the deceased.
Do not worry if you or someone burst in to tears as these are being spoken of, I will take it at your pace. I even have tissues to hand too. If I have to make a series of visits, then do not worry about this, or think you are putting me out.
I will make notes and write what I am told so I have the information to hand when I write it up. I write as much as I can, so I do not have to keep pestering you to clarify anything. You have enough to be doing without me keep calling.
Once everything has been discussed, then I will email it to the designated people to read from start to finish.
I am only human, so there may be something not quite right be it a date, place or persons name. So much is said in a meeting little errors like this do occur.
I will say it is written as to how I speak, so something may not seem how you would say something, there also may be a comment I make too.
If your happy with everything then email me back and tell me. If something needs to be amended, then either change it yourself and email me back and say you have amended it or make your changes and highlight it in red for me to see.
I have a saved copy on my laptop which is written ready for me to print so I amend that version, as it is in a larger print making it easier on the day to read.
I would require any tributes being made by the family emailed to me, preferably in word document format, including the choices of music, as I have to time the service from start to finish to ensure it fits in to the allocated time allowed at the crematorium. (20-30 mins)
On the day of the service, I like to contact the family, just to check if there is anything, they need me to do before I get to the crematorium. (if you need me to grab some tissues, I will get them for you do not worry).
I will be at the crematorium anywhere from an hour to thirty minutes before the service.
I will always check with you if your still happy to read your tribute, and any particular details like curtain requirements (Open or closed) is still the same as discussed. It has happened it changes last minute.
On the day in my folder that I read from, the tributes are printed out to, so if whoever is reading the tribute forgets their copy (not happened to date but always room for the first) or worst still, you or whoever is reading suddenly feels you/ they cannot face standing up and reading or stops half way through, I already know what is being said so I can say it all for you or continue for you.