How to Create a Funeral Order of Service

Amanda-Louise Funeral Services
November 15, 2023

How to Create a Funeral Order of Service

This blog is designed to explain what it is, the benefit of having one at the funeral, and what it can include. Its often called 'funeral stationery' or 'order of service booklet'. During the funeral planning process, it can become a useful tool when thinking of the structure of the service you want. So see below our practical tips and advice on this popular addition to a funeral:-

What is an Order of Service?

In its simplest form it is a printed sheet of paper that becomes a guide showing what is going to happen during the funeral service. Think of it as a programme for the funeral service proceedings.

Why is it an advantage to have an Order of Service at the funeral?

It allows the attendees something to follow, and avoids the need for various song or hymn books. It provides a keepsake of the event as they can become a special memory of a loved one for all those people who have come to say their goodbyes.

Do all Order of Services look the same?

There is a vast range of different styles from a traditional to contemporary. They can simply be printed onto a A4 sheet of paper, or mostly they are printed onto an A5 card which becomes a booklet design. You can have minimum of 2 pages or as many as you need. Popular page choice is 4 sided. The family or funeral director could use a template and print from their own printer. Or there is the option for a professionally designed order of service that is bespoke and printed onto quality silk card.

Does the order of service have to be religious?

No particularly if you are not having any reference to religion during the service. It is usual to show who is going to conduct the ceremony, so if it is a minister then they will have religious content during their service. If you choose to use an independent celebrant, as they can include any religion or none at all, that is up to you to decide.

What can be included in a funeral Order of Service?

There is no right or wrong what can be included but generally the layout tends to be:-

At the top, it would include the person's name, the date of their birth and death and details of the funeral location, date and time.

In the middle section of this guide, it would explain the format of the service ie whats happening. For example the procession, welcome, eulogy, reflection, committal, closing words and exit. And who is leading the service and if anyone else is going to give a tribute. If you are having a poem, it could show the poem's words or similar if there was a prayer; that way the attendees can easily join in those words. Its usual to show the music choices and who it is sung by for example. To make it personal, you can add photographs and can add interests the person had; dependent upon the space you have available.

It could include a sentimental quote remembering them by, or a message to make it heartfelt

At the bottom, it would include any special thanks and if you wish to invite the attendees to a reception (wake) after the funeral service and address where it will be held. And if you are wanting any donations of monies, it would include the details of your chosen charity.

How many copies should you print?

If you find out how many people will be attending the funeral, that will give you an idea how many copies you need to print. If you have a large number attending, but want to keep the costs as low as possible, then people could share ie one between two. However on most cases there isnt much difference on price between say 50 or 60 copies (they are usually printed in tens) as the majority of the cost is in its set up design stage.

If you have any left over, you could send one to someone who wasnt able to attend the funeral as a keepsake

Who gives out the Order of Service at the funeral?

If you have a funeral director helping you with the funeral, then they would do this. They can either hand these out to the attendees or they could be placed onto the chairs in advance. Alternatively you could ask a family member to do this if you'd prefer.

What Order of Service Booklets does Amanda-Louise Funeral Services offer?

We prefer to outsource our order of services to have that quality professional look and feel. We talk through with our client what it should obtain, make suggestions if needed, obtain the photographs and work with our partner design company who then designs them, checks with us that we approve, then prints onto quality 350gsm silk card before returning to us. The turnaround is extremely quick.

The alternative option we offer is that we ourselves prepare and print our standard order of services, and these are lovely and does keep the costs lower as we know nowadays cost is an issue for many of us.

What other types of funeral stationery is there?

Mourning cards - these cards announce the sad death of the person and gives details of the funeral and often sent to people as a way of inviting them to the funeral service. This is helpful to some who do not want the stress of talking to many people. They could be in the similar design as the order of service.

Thank you cards - these are cards sent to people who have attended the funeral service or wake, or thanking them for sending sympathy cards or flowers for example. The cards could have photos used from the order of service.

Bookmarks - again these can be designed in the similar format. Traditionally these were ideal to place into hymn books so people could quickly go to the right page. Nowadays they are an added extra, and used as a keepsake.

At Amanda-Louise Funeral Services we offer a range of funeral stationery and accessories to make the day add meaning and personal touches. For more guides on practical advice go to the top navigation bar on our website.

Amanda-Louise Funeral Services
Amanda-Louise Funeral Directors 3 Blenheim Road, Minehead, Somerset, TA24 5PY (by appointment only)
‍Blog Disclaimer - the article is opinion based by the author only, the content is for information purposes only, and as such is not guaranteed. Whilst is intended to be accurate there may be some unintentional errors, mistakes or omissions and therefore may be subject of updating. In accordance with advice articles should the reader wish to rely on this information, they do so at their own risk. Any prices quoted are accurate at time of writing content.

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