Personal Information

In the event of your death, there are a lot of people to be contacted, arrangements to be made, and services to be held. These can happen in a whole lot of different ways. Things are more likely to happen the way you want them to happen if you let the church (and your next of kin) know what you want. When it does happen, decisions will have to be made by people who are probably under a lot of stress, and have time constraints.

Here are some suggestions for how you can help oil the wheels, so that things happen more or less smoothly and the way you want them to happen.

1. Complete a Personal Information Form and return a copy to the church. You might want to also provide a copy to your next-of-kin.

Part 1: General information that could help in writing an obituary and in filling out the death certificate.

Part 2: Information for your next of kin. Stuff they will probably want to know when they pull up at the curb after their long trip from Oklahoma.

Part 3: Burial procedures. How do you want it done? You might as well specify a few of the details, if you have a preference. It makes things a lot easier for your priest and your kin if they don't have to decide these things at the last moment. You can even suggest which hymns to use at the service, which funeral home, and what kind of disposition you want for your last remains.

If it seems a little bizarre to be doing this, remember that it will be a time of stress for those who need to make the arrangements. Doing it now will help them enormously. Even though you send your next of kin a copy now, it's a good idea to have it on file at the church in case your relatives misplace their copy or forget to bring it along at the time.

These forms can be downloaded in PDF form, and then you can type directly into the form on-line. We suggest that you save the file in your computer so that you can continue later on to fill it out. When it's complete, print it out and provide a copy to your clergy-person and to those who are likely to be involved inmaking the arrangements at that time.

There are copies of the form at the church office, so you can stop by the church office and pick them up there, if you prefer.

2. You might want to have a health care proxy form. Health care proxy form. They can also be downloaded from the NY State web site.

3. You might want to have a will even if you don't have very many worldly goods to leave behind. Some people also want to specify who can sign legal papers if they're incapacitated, and so want power of attorney papers.