Religious Funeral Services: Tradition, Honor, and Faith | Phaneuf
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Religious Funeral Services: Tradition, Honor, and Faith

Religious funeral services are a time-honored custom that exist in a wide variety of cultures and faiths. Many people find comfort in turning to their faith when they’ve lost a loved one, and a faith-based service can help ease their grief. It can be very meaningful, celebrating the person’s life and provide an opportunity for friends and family to say their goodbyes and pay their respects. It allows those left behind to find comfort and peace in their faith.

Most Religions Have Certain Religious Customs and Traditions When Dealing
with Death

Many religions have specific protocols for end-of-life events. There are very specific procedures and traditions for how the body should be cleaned and dressed, whether or not there is a wake and its length, and specific features to include in the memorial or funeral service. Some services are held in a church, synagogue or other house or worship. The guidance that is provided often fulfills any religious obligation, but it also helps the grieving survivors find peace and comfort.

We work with many different religions, including:

We also have other non-religious services as well. With each type of religious funeral service, we strive to provide an authentic experience that remains directly in line with that religion’s specific protocols, customs, and traditions.

If you have any questions about what to include in the service or information on the specific customs, you should contact your local clergy. If you don’t have a local clergy, we can help put you in touch with someone who can help you.

Religious Funeral Services Give Family and Friends a Chance to Honor the Deceased

You may choose a religious funeral service if the deceased was religious or if the family is. Often the service will include a clergy member who will speak and sometimes provide a reading. There may be certain songs that are sung and poetry or scripture that are read. Most of the time there will be some type of prayer that is said aloud. All of these things can be cathartic and healing for the family members, especially if they are religious. It can help them draw closer to their faith and find comfort.

This is also a very loving way to honor the deceased, by having a service that focuses on the things that were important to them. For family and friends, it marks the passing of that person who was so important to them. It allows them to say goodbye and pay tribute to that person.

In some religious, it is common for various people to stand up and talk about the deceased. They can share stories, talk about what they will miss, and enjoy remembering special characteristic or traits about the person. This is a healing activity for all involved, not just the person talking.

If You are Non-Religious and Find Yourself at a Religious Funeral Service

It can be a little awkward to find yourself at a religious funeral service when you yourself are not religious, or the religion is different from yours. Don’t be intimidated. There is no requirement for non-religious attendees (or any attendees) to participate in the group prayers or other specifically religious activities, although many do out of respect for the family. While it is a way of honoring the departed, it is not mandatory that you join in the activities. Your presence conveys your honor for the deceased and support for his or her family and friends.

If you are planning a religious funeral service and you expect a number of people from outside your faith, you may want to consider creating a guide of some sort for your non-religious attendees. It can help them navigate through the ceremony, including words to songs or prayers, and even provide some information on the traditions behind the service. This can help those attendees feel more relaxed and confident.

A Phaneuf representative can help you begin planning your religious funeral service and ensure that it honors your loved one, while staying consistent with your faith.

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