What to Say When Scattering Ashes: Make the Moment Count

Published September 29, 2020
woman with cremated ashes in urn standing by river

Scattering ashes can be a beautiful and cherished moment for you and/or your friends and family members to share while honoring a deceased loved one. While it can be difficult to know what to say when scattering ashes, keeping some helpful tips in mind can assist you in coming up with something meaningful to say.

What to Say When Scattering Ashes

It can feel like a lot of pressure to come up with the perfect thing to say when scattering a loved one's ashes. Know that there is no right or wrong thing to say and that whatever you feel comfortable saying or not saying is perfectly fine.

What Prayer to Say While Spreading Ashes

Prayers to say while scattering ashes:

What to Say While Scattering Ashes at Sea

If you would like to scatter your loved one's ashes at sea, you can consider saying:

  • May (insert deceased individual's name) rest easy and move gently with the ebb and flow of the sea. You will be forever remembered.
  • Let the gentle rocking of the ocean carry you away. You are loved, you are cherished, you are deeply missed.
  • We all know (insert deceased individual's name) loved to be out on the water, so we thought it would be fitting to let him/her/them go here. We miss you every day, but we know you'll be happy and at peace in your new home, gently floating in the water.
  • Quote by Sylvia Earle: "With every drop of water you drink, every breath you take, you're connected to the sea. No matter where on Earth you live."

Beautiful Quotes for Spreading Ashes

Quotes to say before, during, or after scattering ashes:

  • Excerpt from "Alone" by Edgar Allan Poe: "From childhood's hour I have not been. As others were, I have not seen. As others saw, I could not awaken. My heart to joy at the same tone. And all I loved, I loved alone."
  • Although I will not love another like I loved you, I will carry you in my heart forever and honor your memory every day.
  • Loss only feels this painful when someone has left their mark on your heart. (Insert deceased individual's name) will stay in my heart forever.
  • Quote by Thomas Campbell: "To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die."
  • Quote by Alfred Lord Tennyson: "Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all."

Bible Verses for Scattering Ashes Ceremony

If you and/or your loved one were religious, you may consider reciting some Bible verses while scattering their ashes. You may consider:

Poems for Scattering Ashes

Poems can be a touching way to honor your loved one before or after you spread their ashes.

boy reading poem from book in field

Tips on Finding the Right Words to Say for Scattering Ashes

Before the ash scattering ceremony:

  • Consider the personality and beliefs of your deceased loved one.
  • Think about who might like to say a few words as well.
  • Consider the tone you're going for- know that you can be serious or more lighthearted.

What to Do When Scattering Ashes

During the ash scattering ceremony, you can opt to speak, have multiple speakers, play music, play a slideshow, share memories, or have a moment of silence. However you'd like the ceremony to look is completely up to you and what you feel comfortable with.

Order of Service for Scattering of Ashes

An ash scattering service can look however you'd like. An example of the order of service for ash scattering:

  1. Greet those who are arriving if you've traveled separately.
  2. Go over the order of events that will take place.
  3. Recite your speech, poem, or quotes.
  4. See if anyone else wants to speak.
  5. Let everyone know you're going to spread the ashes.
  6. Spread the ashes.
  7. Know that someone may want to say something after the ashes are scattered as well.
  8. You may want to have a get together after to further support each other and spend time together.

Scattering Ashes Ceremony Ideas

There are plenty of meaningful options when it comes to creating a beautiful ash scattering ceremony. When coming up with a plan, consider the personality of your deceased loved one.

Where Is a Good Place to Spread Ashes?

When spreading ashes, it's important to keep in mind rules and regulations at the specific location you've selected. The best place to spread ashes is one that holds special memories for your loved one.

woman scattering cremated ashes off bridge into water

Special Ideas for Scattering of Ashes

Special ideas for scattering ashes or keeping ashes include:

  • Scatter the ashes on your property to keep your loved one close to you.
  • Some companies will mix a portion of your loved one's ashes with clay and turn it into a work of art.
  • Some tattoo companies will mix a portion of your loved one's ashes in with ink and can use it to give you a meaningful tattoo.
  • Some companies can help you scatter ashes from a plane if a specific location or flying is meaningful for you and/or your loved one.
  • Scatter ashes at sea.
  • Scatter ashes in your garden.

What Do You Say at an Interment of Ashes?

While it may feel overwhelming or difficult to come up with what to say while scattering ashes of a loved one, know that whatever you decide to say will be right for this particular moment. Be sure to take care of yourself during this time and reach out for help if you would like some extra support.

What to Say When Scattering Ashes: Make the Moment Count