Fran Hall
Fresh out of the box and ready for reading, here’s the e-book that is essential for the library of anyone with an interest in anything funereal. Or actually anyone with an interest in life. Enough said. Published today. Buy it here.  
Charles Cowling
  “There is the official notice and ceremony, and then the long and agonizing process that follows … Eulogies are never the last word.” That’s a quote from an article sent to me by a friend (thanks, Kathryn). In full, it’s even better: “I had nearly forgotten how death plays
Charles Cowling
  From The Times obituary for Walter Walsh: Walter Walsh killed people for a living. He was exceptionally good at it. But unlike many in his line of work, he never shot anyone who didn’t need shooting. Both as an FBI agent in the 1930s and as a marine officer during
Charles Cowling
  Over on the Mindfulness and Mortality blog, in a discussion about funeral eulogies, Gloriamundi asks a good question: “Why do we seem to feel the need to sum up a life and pass judgement on it?” He goes on: “The torrent of unqualified praise that falls on someone who
Charles Cowling
  The cairns along  a wilderness trail are built of rocks of various shapes and sizes. The memorial cairn at the end of a life is also a composite, but an experiential one. It is made up of the memories, the thoughts and the feelings of all who are gathered
Charles Cowling
  A great funeral eulogy showcases a killer anecdote. Here’s one to die for from the Times obituary for diplomat Andrew Stuart above): Stuart won the Colonial Police Medal in 1961 when he overcame an escaped prisoner and self-styled prophet, Kigaanira, who was drawing a crowd by dancing with a
Charles Cowling
There’s nothing new in a minister-naffs-off-mourners story, nor yet a Catholic-priest-bans-eulogy story. Some minsters are insensitive to the needs of their congregations, some insist on theological orthodoxy, some use a funeral as a conversion opportunity, some like to remind non-churchgoers that they will burn for all eternity in the fires
Charles Cowling
  One for you celebrants. US Methodist minister Talbot Davis has written an open letter to fellow pastors on his blog urging them to make a better fist of funerals. He offers lots of sound advice and concludes by urging them to use his favourite line: “[The deceased] is more
Charles Cowling
  Posted by Richard Rawlinson Mafia funerals in churches intrigue. Any congregation inevitably includes an eclectic mix of faces in the pews, but the mobsters and molls at a gangster funeral turn the nave into something else. They’re totally welcome, of course, and are likely to be behaving with perfect decorum,
Charles Cowling
  The job of the life-centred funeral is clear enough. It serves two purposes: first, to meditate on the now-complete life lived; second, to spell out all that has not been lost. While the dead person will no longer be an active presence in the mourners’ lives, their example will