Brilliant Bits from Boston - Online Memorials

Rev. Sharon Dittmar

Rev. Sharon Dittmar, Congregational Life Consultant

There are so many hard choices to make about celebrating the life of a loved one who has died during COVID-19. I recently watched a live stream non-UU memorial service where a family member of the deceased stood at the start of the service and said, “We are shortening this service to two readings and a prayer so we don’t become a super spreader event.” The local COVID numbers had increased so dramatically between the day the service was set and the day it was held that the family changed plans. How do we celebrate those who have died and comfort and connect to those who mourn their loss? The UUA has a wonderful resource page, A Guide to Planning Online Memorial Services During a Pandemic, that offers alternatives to meeting in person. It includes a twenty-minute podcast from Professor Mark Hicks entitled, “What Do We Do Now? A Faith Formation Response to Global Pandemic.” In this podcast, we learn how Professor Hicks created a meaningful online worship service for his brother, Michael Hicks, who died from COVID-19.