Saturday, November 25, 2017

About Funerals

Every burial service is a celebration of Easter. Our funerals find their meaning in the resurrection. Because Jesus was raised from the dead, we believe we will also be raised from the dead.

The service, therefore, is characterized by joy in the certainty that “neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

This joy, however, does not make human grief unChristian. The very love we have for each other in Christ brings deep sorrow when we are parted by death. Jesus himself wept at the grave of his friend. So, while we rejoice that one we love has entered into the nearer presence of our Lord, we sorrow in sympathy with those who mourn.

– from The Book of Common Prayer

FAQ’s for Funerals

How can I arrange for “last rites”?
For last rites or prayers at the time of death, you can call at any time of the day or night. As the time gets close, ask for the best phone number to use to reach the priest at any hour.

When should I alert the pastor of a death?
Please alert us as soon as possible following the death of one of our members. We are here to help you make arrangements for what happens next. Funeral plans are made with both the pastor’s and the Funeral Director’s help … so it is important that you not let the Funeral Director make plans before speaking with the priest.

When/where should the service be held?
The timing of the service is a matter often determined best with the Funeral Director’s help. However, you should only set a date after talking with the pastor. Also, it’s best for baptized Christians to have a service at the Church and not the Funeral Home. After all, the Church is your real home when it comes to spiritual matters.

What happens to the casket at church?
We keep the casket closed during the service, and covered with a funeral pall, a large piece of fabric. That way all caskets, both expensive and economical, are treated with the same respect. We believe the service is not about the body or the casket but about God.

Does the body need to be at the service?
Yes. Funeral services, unlike memorial services, always include either the casket or the ashes that represent the person.

What are the costs for a funeral at Church of the Spirit?
There are no costs for a funeral or for the services of the priest for any of our members. Please make sure Funeral Directors do not automatically include costs for the use of the Church in their bills. It is a common practice. There may be a charge for extra musicians should you choose to have them for the service.

Smoothing the Way

Here’s a brochure that you can fill in to let your family know about your preferences at the time of death. While it is not a happy thing to make these decisions ahead of time, it does save a good deal of worry and stress in your family after you have died. Please keep a copy for yourself, and your family, and put a copy of this brochure on file in the Church Office.

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