Christian Funeral Ceremony
About Christian Funerals
Christian funeral has a strong belief in the afterlife and much of their lives are directed at achieving eternal peace in Heaven. When a Christian dies, it is seen as the end of his/her life on earth and the family & friends grieve for the deceased and give thanks for their life.
There are many denominations within Christianity that hold differing views – Assembly of God, Baptist, Anglican, Church of Christ, Church of God, Episcopal, Jehovah’s Witness, Lutheran, Mennonite, Methodist, Moravian, Mormon, Pentecostal, Presbyterian, Roman Catholic, Salvation Army, United Church of Christ – however they generally adhere to several common principles and may have similar funeral rituals. Any variations may differ according to the deceased’s or deceased’s family’s respective wishes.
The Christian funeral ceremony generally consists of :
- The Gathering: the priest will open the service with a reading from the scripture.
- Reading and sermon: a psalm from the Bible is read out, usually Psalm 23, “The Lord is my Shepherd”. Verses from the Old and New Testament are also read.
- Prayers of thanksgiving, penitence, and readiness are also read.
- Silent time for reflection to reflect on the deceased.
- Commendation and farewell. The priest reads out the words and prayers of entrusting and commending.
- The committal: The most solemn moment of the service where the coffin is lowered into the grave. The priest will read out “We, therefore, commit (his or her) body to the ground; earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust; in the sure and certain hope of the Resurrection to eternal life”.
There may also be a selection of hymns which are sung throughout the service.