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Funeral Reading

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langara | 22:11 Fri 23rd Mar 2018 | Body & Soul
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My son has been asked to do a reading at his Grandads funeral next week, has anyone a favourite they could share. Thanks

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Sorry for your loss, langara.

Both my children spoke at their grandad’s funeral last month. Both completely different, but both speaking about the memories that have always stayed with them. I was really proud of them.

Perhaps your son could write something similar, then it would have that personal touch.

Whatever you decide, I expect it’s a daunting task for him, and I wish your all the best.
My son also drew on his memories he had of his grandad. Whilst others did readings from the bible.
If you Google the relevant words there are lots of websites with examples which could probably be emended to suit.
I like this:

If I should die and
Leave you here awhile
Be not like others sore undone,
Who keep long vigils
By the silent dust and weep.
For my sake turn again
To life and smile
Nerving thy heart
And trembling hand to do
Something to comfort
Other hearts than thine.
Complete these dear
Unfinished Tasks of mine,
And I, perchance
May therein comfort you.

Mary Lee Hall

I'm also fond of this, from Cymbeline:

Fear no more the heat o’ the sun,
Nor the furious winter’s rages;
Thou thy worldly task hast done,
Home art gone, and ta’en thy wages:
Golden lads and girls all must,
As chimney-sweepers, come to dust.

Fear no more the frown o’ the great;
Thou art past the tyrant’s stroke;
Care no more to clothe and eat;
To thee the reed is as the oak:
The scepter, learning, physic, must
All follow this, and come to dust.

Fear no more the lightning flash,
Nor the all-dreaded thunder stone;
Fear not slander, censure rash;
Thou hast finished joy and moan:
All lovers young, all lovers must
Consign to thee, and come to dust.

No exorciser harm thee!
Nor no witchcraft charm thee!
Ghost unlaid forbear thee!
Nothing ill come near thee!
Quiet consummation have;
And renownèd be thy grave




My favourites are "Do not stand at my grave and weep", "She (He)is gone" and for someone who was in the RAF "High Flight"
My daughter read this at my mother's funeral:

It seemeth such a little way to me
Across to that strange country – the Beyond;
And yet, not strange, for it has grown to be
The home of those whom I am so fond,
They make it seem familiar and most dear,
As journeying friends bring distant regions near.

So close it lies, that when my sight is clear
I think I almost see the gleaming strand.
I know I feel those who have gone from here
Come near enough sometimes, to touch my hand.
I often think, but for our veiled eyes,
We should find heaven right round about us lies.

I cannot make it seem a day to dread,
When from this dear earth I shall journey out
To that still dear country of the dead,
And join the lost ones, so long dreamed about.
I love this world, yet shall I love to go
And meet the friends who wait for me, I know.

I never stand above a bier and see
The seal of death set on some well-loved face
But that I think ‘One more to welcome me,
When I shall cross the intervening space
Between this land and that one “over there”;
One more to make the strange Beyond seem fair.’

And so for me there is no sting to death,
And so the grave has lost its victory.
It is but crossing – with a bated breath,
And white, set face – a little strip of sea,
To find the loved ones waiting on the shore,
More beautiful, more precious than before.

Beyond by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Oh my gosh, there is some beautiful poetry on here, particularly the one above. As roopower says 'High Flight' is another one and I feel it doesn't have to apply to anyone just in the RAF, as to me, the words indicate a soul leaving the earth and my beloved Mum loved this poem and particularly the end when it states that 'I have slipped the surly bonds of earth and touched the face of God' which is why I read it out at her funeral. You can google the full poem langara x
I like this one by Henry Scott Holland


Death is nothing at all.
It does not count.
I have only slipped away into the next room.
Nothing has happened.
Everything remains exactly as it was.
I am I, and you are you, and the old life that we lived so fondly together is untouched, unchanged.
Whatever we were to each other, that we are still.
Call me by the old familiar name.
Speak of me in the easy way which you always used.
Put no difference into your tone.
Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow.
Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes that we enjoyed together.
Play, smile, think of me, pray for me.
Let my name be ever the household word that it always was.
Let it be spoken without an effort, without the ghost of a shadow upon it.
Life means all that it ever meant.
It is the same as it ever was.
There is absolute and unbroken continuity.
What is this death but a negligible accident?
Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight?
I am but waiting for you, for an interval, somewhere very near, just round the corner.
All is well.
Nothing is hurt; nothing is lost.
One brief moment and all will be as it was before.
How we shall laugh at the trouble of parting when we meet again!

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