A funeral marks the close of a human life on earth. It is the opportunity for friends and family to express their grief, to give thanks for the life which has now completed its journey in this world and to commend the person to God.
Christians believe that the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ give them hope and cause for thanksgiving in the face of death. In this faith we entrust those who have died to the infinite mercy and love of God. A Methodist funeral service acknowledges this hope and offers bereaved people the opportunity to remember their loved one's life and offer them into God's care.
Most people go to a funeral director to arrange a funeral. If you don't know of a local funeral director, visit www.uk-funerals.co.uk or www.nafd.org.uk for practical arrangements and how to find a funeral director.
The funeral director makes the first contact with the Minister about booking a funeral at the Church and/or the Crematorium or Cemetery.
The Minister will then contact you and arrange to come and meet with you, usually at your home or the home of one of the family. S/he will offer support and help you to plan the service, bearing in mind the wishes of the deceased and their family. The service at Central Methodist Church can be very short and quiet with only a few members of the family present or an occasion of great solemnity with music, hymns and a packed church. It can be the standard funeral service from the Methodist Worship Book or with the addition of specially chosen music, hymns, favourite prayers and readings and a tribute. We make every effort to work with the relatives to design a service which is fitting for the person and which meets the needs of those attending.
The time between a person's death and their funeral is often very busy and full of practical arrangements. Often it is only after the funeral that the full extent of loss affects the bereaved.
Grieving is a natural and important part of coming to terms with and healing this loss and it may continue for several months. There are people in most local churches who have experienced loss and they are often the best people to offer support in the months and years following a death. Ministers may be able to offer help or find others who can provide such friendship and support. There are patterns and themes to bereavement but each person is different and it is important for people to be supported in finding their own way through grief.
Bereavement support, can be arranged through CRUSE.