Funeral

    Resources
     
     
    Prayers for Use with the Dying
and at Funeral and Memorial
Services
     
    These prayers follow the order of dying and mourning. They reflect the sequence found in the services, from the time of death until after the Funeral:
     
  Prayers with Dying People 
     
  Gathering Prayers 
     
  Prayers of Penitence (Kyries and Absolutions) 
     
  Collects for Funeral and Memorial Services 
     
  Thanksgiving for the Life of the Departed 
     
  Prayers for Those who Mourn 
     
  Prayers for Readiness to Live in the Light of Eternity 
     
  Litanies and Responsive Prayers 
     
  Prayers of Entrusting and Commending 
     
  Blessings and other Endings 
     
  Prayers for Use after Psalms 
     
    Other suitable prayers may be found in the sections Before the Funeral and After the Funeral. Prayers suitable for a child may be found here.
     
    Prayers with Dying People  
     
1
  Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, refresh me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O good Jesus, hear me.
Within your wounds hide me.
Let me never be separated from you.
From the power of darkness defend me.
In the hour of my death, call me
and bid me come to you,
that with your saints I may praise you
for ever and ever. 
Amen.
     
2
  Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me,
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.
     
3
  Lord Jesus Christ, we thank you
for all the benefits you have won for us,
for all the pains and insults you have borne for us.
Most merciful redeemer,
friend and brother,
may we know you more clearly,
love you more dearly,
and follow you more nearly,
day by day. 
    Amen.
     
4
  Lord,
in weakness or in strength
we bear your image.
We pray for those we love
who now live in a land of shadows,
where the light of memory is dimmed,
where the familiar lies unknown,
where the beloved become as strangers.
Hold them in your everlasting arms,
and grant to those who care
      a strength to serve,
      a patience to persevere,
      a love to last
      and a peace that passes human understanding.
Hold us in your everlasting arms,
today and for all eternity;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.
     
    Gathering Prayers  
     
5
  God our refuge and strength,
close at hand in our distress;
meet us in our sorrow and lift our eyes
to the peace and light of your constant care.
Help us so to hear your word of grace
that our fear will be dispelled by your love,
our loneliness eased by your presence
and our hope renewed by your promises
in Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
6
  Gracious Father,
in darkness and light,
in trouble and in joy,
help us to trust your love,
to serve your purpose
and to praise your name;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
7
  Heavenly Father,
you have not made us for darkness and death,
but for life with you for ever.
Without you we have nothing to hope for;
with you we have nothing to fear.
Speak to us now your words of eternal life.
Lift us from anxiety and guilt
to the light and peace of your presence,
and set the glory of your love before us;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
    Prayers of Penitence  
   
   
Kyries
 
     
8
  Remember, Lord, your compassion and love,
for they are everlasting.
Lord, have mercy.
[All
  Lord, have mercy.]
     
    Remember not the sins of my youth or my transgressions,
but think on me in your goodness, O Lord,
      according to your steadfast love. 
Christ, have mercy.
[All
  Christ, have mercy.]
     
    O keep my soul and deliver me;
let me not be put to shame, for I have put my trust in you.
Lord, have mercy.
[All
  Lord, have mercy.]
     
     
9
  Lord Jesus, you have shown us the way to the Father:
Lord, have mercy.
[All
  Lord, have mercy.]
     
    Lord Jesus, your word is a light to our path:
Christ, have mercy.
[All
  Christ, have mercy.]
     
    Lord Jesus, you are the good shepherd,
leading us into everlasting life:
Lord, have mercy.
[All
  Lord, have mercy.]
     
     
10
  Praise the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits:
Lord, have mercy.
[All
  Lord, have mercy.]
     
    Who forgives all your sin
and heals all your infirmities:
Christ, have mercy.
[All
  Christ, have mercy.]
     
    Who saves your life from destruction
and crowns you with mercy and loving-kindness:
Lord, have mercy.
[All
  Lord, have mercy.]
     
     
11
  Out of the depths I cry to you:
Lord, hear my voice.
Lord, have mercy.
[All
  Lord, have mercy.]
     
    If you should mark what is done amiss:
who may abide it?
Christ, have mercy.
[All
  Christ, have mercy.]
     
    Trust in the Lord, for with him there is mercy:
for with him is ample redemption.
Lord, have mercy.
[All
  Lord, have mercy.]
     
   
Absolutions
 
     
12
  May the God of love
bring us back to himself,
forgive us our sins
and assure us of his eternal love
in Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
    The following absolution is particularly appropriate when the Funeral service is set within Holy Communion
     
13
  May God our Father forgive us our sins
and bring us to the fellowship of his table
with his saints for ever. 
All
  Amen.
     
   
Collects for Funeral and
Memorial Services
 
     
14
  Merciful Father,
hear our prayers and comfort us;
renew our trust in your Son,
whom you raised from the dead;
strengthen our faith
that [N and N] all who have died in the love of Christ
will share in his resurrection;
who lives and reigns with you,
now and for ever. 
All
  Amen.
     
15
  Eternal God, our maker and redeemer,
grant us [with N] and all the faithful departed
the sure benefits of your Son's saving passion
      and glorious resurrection:
that, in the last day,
when you gather up all things in Christ,
we may with them enjoy the fullness of your promises;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. 
All
  Amen.
     
   
Thanksgiving for the Life of the Departed
 
     
16
  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who has blessed us all with the gift of this earthly life
and has given to our brother/sister N
his/her span of years and gifts of character.
God our Father, we thank you now for all his/her life,
for every memory of love and joy,
for every good deed done by him/her
and every sorrow shared with us.
We thank you for his/her life and for his/her death,
we thank you for the rest in Christ he/she now enjoys,
we thank you for giving him/her to us,
we thank you for the glory we shall share together.
Hear our prayers through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen. 
     
17
  Merciful Father and Lord of all life,
we praise you that we are made in your image
and reflect your truth and light.
We thank you for the life of your child N ,
for the love he/she received from you
and showed among us.
Above all, we rejoice at your gracious promise
to all your servants, living and departed,
that we shall rise again at the coming of Christ.
And we ask that in due time
we may share with our brother/sister that clearer vision,
when we shall see your face in the same Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen. 
     
18
  Lord of all, we praise you
for all who have entered into their rest
and reached the promised land where you are seen face to face.
Give us grace to follow in their footsteps
as they followed in the way of your Son.
Thank you for the memory of those you have called to yourself:
by each memory, turn our hearts from things seen
      to things unseen,
and lead us till we come to the eternal rest
      you have prepared for your people,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
19
  Father in heaven, we praise your name
for all who have finished this life loving and trusting you,
for the example of their lives,
the life and grace you gave them,
and the peace in which they rest.
We praise you today for your servant N
and for all that you did through him/her.
Meet us in our sadness
and fill our hearts with praise and thanksgiving,
for the sake of our risen Lord, Jesus Christ. 
All
  Amen.                 
     
20
  Father in heaven,
we thank you because you made us in your own image
and gave us gifts in mind, body and spirit.
We thank you now for N
and what he/she meant to each of us.
As we honour his/her memory,
make us more aware that you are the one
from whom comes every perfect gift,
including the gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ. 
All
  Amen. 
     
21
  God our Father,
we thank you that you have made each of us
      in your own image,
and given us gifts and talents with which to serve you.
We thank you for N ,
the years we shared with him/her,
the good we saw in him/her,
the love we received from him/her.
Now give us strength and courage
to leave him/her in your care,
confident in your promise of eternal life
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen. 
     
22
  Eternal God and Father,
we praise you that you have made people
      to share life together
and to reflect your glory in the world.
We thank you now for N ,
for all that we saw of your goodness and love in his/her life
and for all that he/she means to each one of us.
As we too journey towards death
may we do so in the company of Jesus,
who came to share our life
that we might share the life of eternity.
To him be glory with you and the Holy Spirit
for ever and ever. 
All
  Amen.
     
23
  Lord God, creator of all,
you have made us creatures of this earth
but have also promised us a share in life eternal:
receive our thanks and praise
that, through the passion and death of Christ,
your child N , our brother/sister,
whom we commend into your hands today,
shares with your saints in the joy of heaven,
where there is neither sorrow nor pain
but life everlasting. Alleluia. 
All
  Amen.
     
24
  Almighty God,
you love everything you have made
and judge us with infinite mercy and justice.
We rejoice in your promises of pardon, joy and peace
to all those who love you.
In your mercy turn the darkness of death into the dawn of new life,
and the sorrow of parting into the joy of heaven;
through our Saviour Jesus Christ,
who died, rose again, and lives for evermore. 
All
  Amen.
     
25
  Almighty God,
we come before you, the supreme judge,
and to Jesus, the mediator of the new covenant,
and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect;
we give you thanks for giving us an unshakeable kingdom
and we worship you in reverence and awe,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
   
Prayers for Those who Mourn
 
     
26
  God of mercy,
as we mourn the death of N
and thank you for his/her life,
we also remember times when it was hard for us to understand,
to forgive, and to be forgiven.
Heal our memories of hurt and failure,
and bring us to forgiveness and life
in Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
27
  Lord Jesus Christ,
you comforted your disciples when you were going to die:
now set our troubled hearts at rest
and banish our fears.
You are the way to the Father:
help us to follow you.
You are the truth:
bring us to know you.
You are the life:
give us that life,
to live with you now and for ever. 
All
  Amen. 
     
28
  O God, who brought us to birth,
and in whose arms we die,
in our grief and shock
contain and comfort us;
embrace us with your love,
give us hope in our confusion
and grace to let go into new life;
through Jesus Christ. 
All
  Amen.
     
29
  Father,
you know our hearts and share our sorrows.
We are hurt by our parting from N whom we loved:
when we are angry at the loss we have sustained,
when we long for words of comfort,
yet find them hard to hear,
turn our grief to truer living,
our affliction to firmer hope
in Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
30
  Gracious God,
surround us and all who mourn this day
with your continuing compassion.
Do not let grief overwhelm your children,
or turn them against you.
When grief seems never-ending,
take them one step at a time
along your road of death and resurrection
in Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
31
  Father, the death of N brings an emptiness into our lives.
We are separated from him/her
and feel broken and disturbed.
Give us confidence that he/she is safe
and his/her life complete with you,
and bring us together at the last
to the wholeness and fullness of your presence in heaven,
where your saints and angels enjoy you for ever and ever. 
All
  Amen.
     
32
  Lord, we pray for those who mourn,
for parents and children,
friends and neighbours.

Be gentle with them in their grief.
Show them the depths of your love,
a glimpse of the kingdom of heaven.
Spare them the torment of guilt and despair.
Be with them as they weep beside the empty tomb
      of our risen Saviour,
Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
33
  Most merciful God,
whose wisdom is beyond our understanding,
surround the family of N with your love,
that they may not be overwhelmed by their loss,
but have confidence in your goodness
and strength to meet the days to come.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen. 
     
34
  Father of all mercies and God of all consolation,
you pursue us with untiring love
and dispel the shadow of death
      with the bright dawn of life.
[Give courage to this family in their loss and sorrow.
Be their refuge and strength, O Lord,
reassure them of your continuing love
and lift them from the depths of grief
into the peace and light of your presence.]
Your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ,
by dying has destroyed our death,
and by rising, restored our life.
Your Holy Spirit, our comforter,
speaks for us in groans too deep for words.
Come alongside your people,
remind them of your eternal presence
and give them your comfort and strength.
All
  Amen.
     
35
  Lord God,
you are attentive to the voice of our pleading.
Let us find in your Son
comfort in our sadness,
certainty in our doubt
and courage to live.
Make our faith strong
through Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
36
  Risen Lord Jesus,
draw near to us as we walk this lonely road.
Pierce our weary sorrow
and gladden our heavy hearts as you go with us,
and bring us in the end to your heavenly table. 
All
  Amen.
     
37
  O God, you do not willingly grieve or afflict
      your children.
Look with pity on the suffering of this family
      in their loss.
Sustain them in their anguish;
and into the darkness of their grief
bring the light of your love;
through Jesus we pray.
All
  Amen.
     
38
  Almighty God,
Father of all mercies and giver of all comfort:
deal graciously, we pray, with those who mourn,
that, casting all their care on you,
they may know the consolation of your love;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
39
  Out of the darkness of our grief,
we cry to you, O Lord.
You gave him/her to us,
and you have taken him/her away.
Turn to us, Lord, and have pity on us,
and give us the comfort that you alone can give,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
    After a short life
     
40
  Lord our God,
you give and you take away.
You blessed us through the gift of N ,
who is now taken from us
and whose loss we mourn.
Help us, through our tears and pain,
to glimpse your hand at work
to bring blessing out of grief.
To you be glory for ever. 
All
  Amen.
     
41
  God of all mystery, whose ways are beyond understanding,
lead us, who grieve at this untimely death,
to a new and deeper faith in your love,
which brought your only Son Jesus
through death into resurrection life.
We make our prayer in Jesus' name. 
All
  Amen. 
     
42
  After a sudden death
    God of hope,
we come to you in shock and grief and confusion of heart.
Help us to find peace in the knowledge
      of your loving mercy to all your children,
and give us light to guide us out of our darkness
into the assurance of your love,
in Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen. 
     
    After a violent death
     
43
  Merciful God,
hear the cries of our grief,
for you know the anguish of our hearts.
It is beyond our understanding
and more than we can bear.
Accept our prayer
that as N has been released from this world's cruelty
so may he/she be received
      into your safe hands and secure love.
We pray that justice may be done
and that we may treasure the memory of his/her life
more than the manner of his/her death.
For Christ's sake. 
All
  Amen.
     
44
  God of love,
we thank you that N is in your gentle and loving hands,
far from the cruelty, violence and pain of our world.
When the trouble was near,
we could not understand how you seemed
      to remain far away.
And yet it is to you we turn;
for in life and death
it is you alone whom we can trust,
and yours alone is the love that holds us fast.
We find it hard to forgive the deed
that has brought us so much grief.
But we know that, if life is soured by bitterness,
an unforgiving spirit brings no peace.
Lord, save us and help us.
Strengthen in us the faith and hope that N
is freed from the past with all its hurt,
and rests for ever in the calm security of your love,
in Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
    After a suicide
     
45
  Eternal God and Father,
look in mercy on those who remember N before you.
Let not the manner of his/her death
cloud the good memories of his/her life.
For N the trials of this world are over
and death is past.
Accept from us all that we feel
even when words fail;
deliver us from despair
and give us strength to meet the days to come
in the faith of Jesus Christ our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
46
  God our strength and our redeemer:
you do not leave us in this life
nor abandon us in death.
Hear our prayer for those in despair,
when days are full of darkness
and the future empty of hope.
Renew in them your sustaining strength
for we believe that there is nothing in all creation
that can separate us from your love
in Christ Jesus our Lord. 
All
  Amen.
     
47
  After a long illness
    Eternal God,
our life is a fleeting shadow that does not endure.
Our years pass quickly,
our days are few and full of trouble.
We thank you that N no longer has to suffer pain or fear,
grappling with death, fighting for life;
and that for him/her
limitations are ended,
weakness is overcome,
and death itself is conquered.
As he/she passes from our earthly sight,
we thank you for the years of his/her presence among us.
And while we feel the pain of the parting,
we rejoice in the faith that he/she has gone to be with you,
for in your presence is the fullness of joy,
at your right hand are pleasures for evermore.
Bless those who had the care of him/her,
especially doctors, nurses and technicians.
Guide and prosper all who are engaged in
      medical research:
may they never lose heart
in their search to discover the way of health and healing.
Grant that by their vision and courage
we may advance in our understanding of the world
and be better able to help those in need.
All
  Amen.
     
48
  In sorrow, guilt and regret
    Forgiving God,
in the face of death we discover
how many things are still undone,
how much might have been done otherwise.
Redeem our failure.
Bind up the wounds of past mistakes.
Transform our guilt to active love
and by your forgiveness make us whole.
We pray in Jesus' name. 
All
  Amen.                 
     
    Prayers continue here