Two funerals update…

…as promised an update on the two funerals.  Both had issues of families being split in one way or another.

At funeral number one, the warring factions came together, and chuckled gently together at the memory of the cream cakes.  They sang, they prayed, they said their goodbyes – and were able to grieve the early loss of personality because of dementia as well as rejoice at the wholeness and healing of death.  (I may have expressed that badly, I hope it makes sense).  They were expecting no more than 20 people – and got about 40.  I was very aware that I only had one side of the story, but the “Other Side” seemed content – “Lovely service”.

Funeral number two was this morning, and I got a phone call late last night with lots more information about the lady, which was a great relief.  I was able to rework sermon to make it all more personal and appropriate for her.  Sadly the warring factions were not entirely reunited, and some family stayed away, so we had a small congregation – but we sang “The Old Rugged Cross” and made our goodbyes.   It all felt a lot better because I knew something about her.

It made me think more about the different funerals we take – some of which haven’t happened to me yet.  The one where no-one knows anything, and there are no mourners. The one where “she was just Aunty x” but no details of a long life are known, and there is no sense of personality.  And in some respects, it doesn’t matter because all are known by the God to whom they are returning.  It’s my job to do the best I can – and sometimes (always??) the best is to trust God.  If no-one else is there, it’s between me, teh funeral director and God, and if there are family, all I can do is try to meet their pastoral needs as best I can.
Thanks to all who prayed for me this week – appreciated!


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