“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. John 14:1-3
The Christian Funeral service is called “The Liturgy of the Resurrection.” While at first this may seem like a euphemism to help grieving people feel better, as Christians we truly believe in the statement of faith behind the name. Whenever someone departs this life it is an opportunity to celebrate not only their life but the life of our Risen Lord whether the service is a funeral, a memorial service, or just a life celebration. We also celebrate his promise that nothing — not even death — can separate us from his love. The words on page 507 of theBook of Common Prayer say it best: The liturgy for the dead is an Easter liturgy. It finds all its meaning in the resurrection. Because Jesus was raised from the dead, we, too, shall be raised. The liturgy, therefore, is characterized by joy, in the certainty that “neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” This joy, however, does not make human grief unchristian. The very love we have for each other in Christ brings deep sorrow when we are parted by death. Jesus himself wept at the grave of his friend. So, while we rejoice that one we love has entered into the nearer presence of our Lord, we sorrow in sympathy with those who mourn.
At Saint James' we will celebrate all Christians passing from this life with The Liturgy of Resurrection, if you are an active member of the church that celebration is held in our Sanctuary, if you are not an active member, that celebration is held at the funeral home.