Pre-Planning a Funeral
One of the greatest gifts family members can be given is to know your wishes concerning a service upon your death. A Celebration of Life, Memorial Service, or Funeral may be pre-planned at any time prior to a person’s passing. In this meeting, with one of Westwood’s Pastors, you will choose some of your preferred Scripture, hymns, service traditions and reception. The plan is then kept on file here at the church as well as copies for you and your family as desired. The plan can be reviewed and changed at any time. Questions or to schedule a time for making your plan, contact the main office to set up an appointment with one of the Pastors.
Funeral Planning Handouts
Download a copy of the handouts from a session that Pastor Tania led, April 2021, about the importance of starting to plan your funeral, which includes:
an overview of funeral planning and options
funeral scriptures & hymns
a template for you to design your service
Planning a Funeral
Westwood frequently walks the final journey of life with members. In such instances, you will probably be in contact with the Pastor or staff person when your loved one passes. Anyone can call the church office, 24/7, at 952-545-5623 and follow the directions to reach the Pastor on Call to inform the church of a death. The church will then contact you to obtain information and begin the service planning process. If you are working with a Funeral Chapel, Westwood will work with them in coordinating services.
Westwood Lutheran Church has established a columbarium to provide a permanent place on the church premises for the inurnment of the cremated remains of Westwood members and their families. The Westwood Columbarium is located in the small chapel between the sanctuary and the commons. The chapel provides a private, quiet place to pray, meditate, and remember.
What is a columbarium?
A columbarium is a liturgically proper and aesthetically pleasing group of niches that contain the cremated remains of the departed. A columbarium provides a safe, theologically correct and ecologically sound way to honor the dead. It also provides a private place for family and friends to come and pray and to remember those who have passed on to eternal life.
Who can be inurned in Westwood's columbarium?
Members and families of Westwood Lutheran Church, along with former members and friends of the congregation are eligible to be inurned at Westwood. The pastoral staff at Westwood is authorized to decide on other eligibility issues.
What is the cost of each niche?
The cost, which may hold one or two urns, is $1100. This includes the brass urn(s) and brass identification plate(s) that are fastened to the granite stone on the front of each niche. Cremation expenses are not included in this cost.$500 of the cost is a tax-deductible contribution to Westwood Lutheran Church. Niches may be purchased in installments, with an initial payment of at least $400, with the balance paid in two installments of $350 within 2 years.
Are niches still available at Westwood?
Please call the church office to determine if niches are still available today. The design allows for expansion for a total of 115 niches at the current location in the Chapel.
How is an inurnment conducted?
Remains may not be inurned in the Westwood Columbarium without a committal service conducted according to the Lutheran Order of Service. The inurnment usually takes place immediately following a memorial service, but may be scheduled at a later time if desired.