Funerals

"In life, in death, in life beyond death, God is with us.  We are not alone.  Thanks be to God."

A New Creed

The death of a loved one is never easy.  A wide range of emotions and thoughts come to people as they planning a funeral.  For some there is a depth of grieve that feels so overwhelming that they do not know what to say or do.  For others, there may be a sense of relief, for the pain and suffering that your loved one experienced will now be over.  Please know that whatever you are feeling, God accepts you and loves you. 

 At St. Paul’s we try to be expressions of God’s love. If you are experiencing grief and sorrow, please know that we are there for you and we are ready to help you through this time. If you have lost a loved one and would like to talk with Rev. Lexie Chamberlain about a funeral or memorial service, or any aspect of your sorrow, please contact the church office.

One of the difficulties faced by loved ones of the deceased is deciding what kind of service to hold, or what kind of content to include.

  • Pre-planning your Christian funeral or memorial service is one of the best ways to help your family during their difficult time of grief and loss.
  • You will be giving your family guidance and direction about the things that are most important to you for your own funeral service.
  • You will be helping to alleviate a great deal of the burden, stress, guilt and difficult decision-making associated with planning a loved one's funeral.
  • You will save your family from over-spending on options that do not reflect your wishes.
  • You will have the opportunity to carefully consider just how you would like to be remembered.

 

At the time of a funeral, the family often meets with the funeral home who then contacts the minister to make arrangements for the day and time of the funeral.  If you would like to contact the minister prior to going to the funeral home, please do so by contacting the church office. 

 

The ministers at St. Paul’s understand the importance of meeting with the family prior to the funeral service.  Most often we refer to funeral services as “A Celebration of Life” service.  It is our belief that the love and the life that you shared with the individual who has died is a gift from God.  The service that is planned by family and clergy is a time in which we give thanks to God. 

 

When meeting with the minister some questions that might be asked are as follows:

When was ______ born?

Where was he/she born?

Who were her/his parents?

Did he/she have any siblings?  Are any siblings still living?

As a child, what kinds of things did _____ participate in?

Where was ______ raised?

If married, how did the couple meet?

If married, when and where did they get married?

Where did ____ go to school?

What kinds of things, outside of work, did ______ enjoy doing?

Did  ______ have any favourite foods, sayings, and clothing?

 

It is the hope that when meeting with the minister, you will be able to share some memories, and in doing so bring comfort to you and help the minister get to know more about the person whose life you are mourning. 

 

We are open to having members of the family or friends speak of the loved one.  It is suggested that you do not include too many in this, as some find the length of service too long.  It is appropriate to have family and friends read scripture or another lesson.

 

If you are having a funeral service at our church, it is understood that one of our ministers officiates at the service.  We also have a director of music who will do the music for the service.  Often at funerals we would sing 2 hymns and have two readings of scripture.  The minister would be happy to help the family in choosing the hymns.  If the loved one did not have favourite scriptures then the minister would recommend some that seem most fitting for the situation. 

 

In the midst of all the decisions that must be made at the time of a death, it is our hope and prayer that you find comfort in God’s love and in the faith community of St. Paul’s United Church.