Mother of all swear words

Charles Cowling

keep-calm-and-no-foul-language

 

Posted by Wendy Coulton

Recently I had a dilemma in that a funeral I was planning and conducting was for someone who was known among their close friends for using the expletive C*** (C U Next Tuesday) with affection and as a genuine term of endearment.

I winced when I heard this because it is the mother of all swear words and I shuddered at the thought of having my mouth washed out with soap if I cursed (a threat my mother made when I was a child). But equally I understood and respected that it wasn’t regarded as offensive within the tight knit social circle of the deceased.

I knew that I would not myself be able to say the C word as an individual with my own values and also in my professional capacity as a funeral celebrant.

The friends were rallying their support by producing the Order of Service and they wanted to include this particular word on it. When I spoke to the mother of the deceased to research the tribute I became increasingly uncomfortable that her generation of the family could be offended by this language and I shared my concern diplomatically with the friend who was organising the Order of Service.

The friend was very gracious and acknowledged the point I raised. They came up with their own compromise which I thought worked brilliantly. A differently worded version of the Order of Service was produced for the family mourners and another with the C word in it was produced and handed out to friends who attended the service.

5 thoughts on “Mother of all swear words

  1. Charles Cowling
    roger fowle

    At my uncle’s funeral, the lady vicar refused to play a song that was my uncle favorite. In fact she told us .the congregation at the service she would not be playing the song , as requested by the family. The song was Imagine John Lennon. then she went preaching to us about how there WAS a heaven this went on for about ten mins. ,

    May she rot in Hell , that is of course if there is such a place , for not carring out the dying wishes of my uncle.

    Go Well uncle Colin.


    Charles Cowling
    1. Charles Cowling
      Kathryn Edwards

      I’m so sorry you had that experience, Roger: what arrogance and disrespect! Sounds as though your love for your uncle transcends any such bollox, however.


      Charles Cowling
  2. Charles Cowling
    andrew plume

    great work Wendy, well done you

    andrew


    Charles Cowling
  3. Charles Cowling
    David Holmes

    What a great idea, I thought this was only me – I have a dear friend who uses this word in almost every sentence, including to describe his closest family and friends. My very young children used to find this highly amusing, but thankfully didn’t copy him.


    Charles Cowling
    1. Charles Cowling
      Wendy Coulton

      Ha ha! I cannot take credit for the compromise solution though. It was the friend of the deceased who took that initiative. Never ceases to amaze me the dilemmas which arise in this work. That’s what makes it so interesting and rewarding.


      Charles Cowling

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