Blessed are they that mourn:
for they shall be comforted.
(Matthew 5: 4)
The truth is that we will all die and we will all experience the grief and sadness of death when our friends and family die. The real issue is how we permit this reality to inform our vision for living and inspire our faithfulness to God. It will also have a big impact on our relationships here and now.
As Christians, we believe that God’s love is available to us in life and in death. We believe that when we die, life is changed, not taken away. Belief in this continuity of love has major implications which bring hope and peace at times of both sadness and joy.
When a death occurs, the practical steps to be taken concern first registering the death with the Registrar at the Town Hall (020 8825 7171) and then making arrangements for a funeral.
The best thing to do first is to visit one of the local Funeral Directors (see below) who will be pleased to give advice on the whole range of possibilities.
The funeral may either be religious or secular and it is the family who choose, unless the deceased has left clear instructions in their Will. It is wise for family members to meet and talk through their feelings about what they expect from a funeral before making any firm plans with either a Funeral Director or the clergy.
Many people prefer to have the clergy involved in a funeral and unless they are already attached to a particular church, they will be put in the direction of their local Church of England parish clergy in the first instance by one of the local funeral directors. Families will need to decide on whether they will proceed with a burial or hold a cremation. The Funeral Director will advise concerning the availability of local cemeteries and crematoriums and make the necessary arrangements.