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Memorial Services

When the Stanford University community loses a valued member, the Office for Religious Life can provide comfort and support. The Senior Associate Dean or Associate Deans for Religious Life are available to offer guidance in planning for and officiating at memorial services or to support you in this difficult time. 

If you would like to have a memorial service in Stanford Memorial Church, the following information will be valuable in directing your next steps.

Eligibility

Our primary responsibility is to our student community.  We are therefore unable to accommodate the requests of all who have an affection for and connection to Stanford University.  In particular, please note that, unfortunately, we are unable to provide memorial services for those whose primary affiliation is with Stanford Hospital and Clinics or Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. 

We are able to provide memorial services for:

  • Current Stanford students, faculty, staff and administrators
  • Current and former trustees of the university
  • Retired Stanford faculty, staff, administrators or former Stanford University employees with at least five years of service
  • Active alumni who have provided major or long-standing service to the University community or the Stanford Alumni Association in time, talent or stewardship
  • Long-standing congregants at University Public Worship when confirmed by the Dean or Associate Deans.
  • Members of the Catholic Community, when confirmed by the Catholic campus clergy
  • Children or spouse/partner of a person in one of the categories listed above

What are the first steps for arranging a memorial service?

If you would like to inquire about a memorial for a member of the Stanford community, you are invited to complete the below inquiry form. If you prefer, you can call our memorial service coordinator at 650 723-9531. If you leave a phone message, please provide the name of the loved one who has died, their university affiliation, date of death, desired time frame for a memorial service, and religious tradition, if any.  Also, please provide your contact information and your relationship to the person who has died.

Once eligibility is confirmed, one of the clergy will follow up with the family or departmental representative to explore availability of the church, potential dates and religious or spiritual sensibilities. 

Once eligibility, date and the officiating Office for Religious Life clergy are determined, family members or departmental representatives will meet with the designated officiant to plan the memorial.  Usually in the same visit, you will also meet with the administrator who will oversee logistics for the service such as parking, accessibility, expected attendance, flowers, etc.