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Funeral or Memorial?
A Funeral is one in which the body of the deceased is present in a casket. The casket is closed throughout the service, and the service may be held in a church, funeral home, or cemetery chapel. The service is held usually from one to three days after the day of death. Burial or cremation follows.
A Memorial service is similar to a funeral, but without the body of the deceased present. It may be held at any time after the day of death, but is usually held within a week or so. Cremation or burial may precede or follow the service.
Order of Worship
Like all worship occasions, a funeral or memorial service includes hymns (optional), prayers, scripture readings, personal rememberings, and a short sermon. Participation by family or friends is welcome.
Time of Service
Memorial or funeral services may be held on any day of the week, but usually not on Sunday. The hour of the service varies, but may be from 10:00 a.m. until late afternoon. Consult with the minister or church secretary, and with the funeral director.
The church will contact the congregation’s music director and ask her to provide appropriate music for the service. Suggestions about the music from the family are invited, and the organist and minister will do their utmost to accommodate the wishes of the family.
A solo or other special music may be included, if appropriate and if available.
Recorded music is not recommended.
You are encouraged to choose at least one hymn for the service, especially if it is to be held in the church. Some of the more common ones chosen are:
The Lord’s my shepherd
Now Thank We All Our God
How great Thou art
Lord of the Dance
If you wish to look through “Voices United” for other hymns, please do so.
It is appropriate to have floral arrangements from the family placed in the sanctuary. If a florist is delivering the flowers to the church, please let the Church Office know which florist and when flowers are to arrive.
A portrait photo or other meaningful memento may be placed next to the flowers in the sanctuary.
A guest register may be provided by the funeral home, or alternatively, may be purchased by the family and placed on the desk in the narthex. A book with detachable pages is preferred. Have a friend attend to the guest book. Friends present at the service may be asked to sign the book.
If you would like the church to provide ushers, please mention this when you meet with the minister(s) in planning the service.
Seating of the Family
The immediate family of the deceased is invited to come to the church five or ten minutes prior to the time of the service, and if they wish, to wait downstairs until just prior to the service. At that time they will all be seated in reserved rows at the front of the sanctuary. Alternatively, the family may wish to come in and be seated at the same time as other people are arriving. The capacity of the sanctuary is 160 - 180. The church is wheelchair accessible.
Below is a breakdown of how the total fee is distributed:
If the service is being arranged by a funeral home, they will possibly pay these costs in their overall fee to you. If you are paying the fee directly, your cheque should be made out to ‘James Bay United Church’ and the Church Office will distribute the amount as indicated above.
Reception following the Service.
Some people wish to use the church hall for a gathering place for friends and family following the service.
Rental of the hall for this occasion would be $200.00, including the use of the kitchen, dishes, etc. and two of our Caretakers to make coffee, tea, etc. and serve. The family provides the food (which could be sandwiches/sweets ordered from Thrifty’s deli department, nearby.) The hall will seat up to 80 people. A stand-up reception of up to 120 people can be accommodated.
Revenue Canada has ruled that churches cannot issue charitable receipts for a ‘fee for service’, like a funeral. They also rule that a charity cannot have a different fee structure for members and non-members. We therefore have a standard fee for everyone, but in case of economic hardship, the fee can be negotiated.
In the obituary that is printed in the paper the family may wish to invite friends to donate memorial gifts of money to benevolent societies or health care agencies. For a person who has been active in the church during his or her life, it is fitting that the church be mentioned as one place that Memorial gifts may be sent. Cheques should be made out to ‘James Bay United Church’.
A Memorial Garden is located at the back of the church, on the lower level. Ashes (without urns or other containers) may be buried. A fee of $200 is requested, which helps us provide perpetual care for the garden. Included in the cost is a small memorial plaque, mounted on the garden wall. The plaque is arranged by the Church Office.