A heart will is very different from a traditional will that deals with valuables and material possessions. Although a traditional will bequeaths one's estate to loved ones, it can feel impersonal, and a heart will is typically about non-material things. Also known as an ethical will or a spiritual will, a heart will is sort of like leaving legacy letters to loved ones. Veterans may leave heart wills to family and friends as well as to those who served alongside them in difficult circumstances. If your loved one left behind a heart will, you can incorporate it into the funeral to help them speak for themselves one more time.
Share Life Stories Directly from the Source
Oftentimes veterans will include interesting and colorful stories of their life, including their time in service, in a heart will. These wonderful stories often involve people who may attend the funeral, so including those excerpts in a funeral service may bring a great deal of comfort to mourners, especially fellow veterans who share the memories. Also, by sharing life stories, you allow all those who attend the funeral to know the person better, which is a special gift that will long be remembered.
Choose Special Things That Aren't Too Personal
A heart will is typically written to specific loved ones who are addressed by name in the will. When choosing excerpts to share during a funeral service, consider what personal information is revealed in the prose. Steer clear of things that get too revealing. If you're in doubt, leave it out. Instead, try to pick out quotes that are inspiring, sweet, and are relevant to the majority of attendees. When talking about the person's time in service of their country, try to keep in sentimental and positive. If a story makes you smile, it may make others smile, too.
Allow the Deceased Person to Have the Last Word
What could be a better way to end a memorial service for a loved one than to allow them to have the last word? You may choose a quote from someone's heart will to end the service on. Simply set up the quote by sharing a few sentences about why you think it is important and why you chose to share it with the attendees. Fellow mourners may be comforted a great deal by knowing what the person felt and thought.
Finally, keep in mind that a heart will is generally created by someone who was facing a terminal illness, but it can sometimes be done by people years before they expect to pass away. Whether someone makes a heart will in the form of a letter, video, or audio recording, it can be incorporated into a funeral to bring the voice of the deceased person into the memorial service. When choosing veteran's funeral packages, you may also consider the kind of service that they would want and how you can incorporate things like a heart will into that service.