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Planning A Scattering Service For A Loved One

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When your loved one chooses cremation service, you may decide to hold a scattering service to pay tribute to his or her legacy. A scattering service can be used in addition to a funeral or memorial service, or it can be held instead of the more traditional funeral service options. Here are a few ideas you may want to incorporate into your loved one's scattering service.

Butterfly Release

Scattering cremains represents becoming one with nature, and one way to add to this experience is to coordinate a butterfly release. The butterflies can be released at the same time that the cremains are scattered, or they can be released at the end of the services as a sort of final farewell. Your funeral home director can help secure the butterflies and assist you with the release.

Prayer Service

If you will be doing a scattering service in place of a traditional funeral, you may want to set up a prayer service. For this option, have your funeral home director help set up folding chairs so everyone can remain seated during the prayers. If you are expecting a large audience, you may want to consider setting up a simple outdoor speaker and microphone setup so everyone can hear what is being said. Work with your local clergy to choose the prayers and any other readings you want to include in the service.

Tree Planting

For scattering services being held in your backyard or on your loved one's property, consider planting a tree as part of the service. There are tree planting urns you can purchase, which incorporate the cremains into the tree seeds, which gives you a way to make your loved one's legacy live forever. However, if you want to scatter the ashes traditionally, you can simply plant a sapling in memory of your loved one. Invite one or two close relatives to break the ground for the tree, and choose one or two other close relatives to cover the planter with earth.


If your loved one wanted his or her services to be more of a celebration, consider having professional fireworks incorporated into the service. Plan to hold the scattering service at dusk, and have the fireworks set off after the payers have been read and the ashes have been scattered. Work with your funeral home director to locate a professional who can handle the fireworks display safely.

With a scattering service, there's plenty of flexibility for creative ideas. Discuss these options with your family, and look for other ideas that you can use that truly reflect the life the dearly departed led.