Funeral

My mother’s funeral took place yesterday.

In the past I have often – though not always – experienced funerals as rather distressing and depressing ordeals, which I was reluctant to attend. My mother had never discussed her wishes regarding her own funeral, but after she died I felt somewhat to my surprise that holding one in the Anglican tradition would be the right thing to do. This was confirmed when while going through her papers I found a list, written some years ago, of the hymns and readings she would want. Although she was not a church-goer, her choices included John’s Gospel Chapter 14 verses 1-6 and 27, Psalm 121, and God be in my Head, perhaps reflecting her religious upbringing.

I was also surprised to find that planning the ceremony was a positive experience. The minister provided an excellent service, as did the funeral director and the organist who were both already personal friends. I was nervous beforehand but all went well, and I managed to remain composed while reading out some of the tributes that had been emailed from my mother’s relatives and friends who live back in the UK. Obviously none of them were able to travel to New Zealand for the event, but many sent cards and flowers, and a good number of our local friends were present to provide their support.

I now understand that funerals can provide a valuable sense of “closure” to the bereaved. After yesterday was over I felt more relaxed, and more ready to move forward to the next stage of life, which will be very different without my mother living next door.

Clare's coffin

6 thoughts on “Funeral

  1. Jennifer, so sorry to hear of Claire’s passing. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on the funeral and I am sure everything you did affirmed her life snd character. i will let my mother know, as she remembers enjoying time with you and Claire some years ago. I am sure I can send sympathy on her behalf.

    Take care as you you adjust to yet another source of stress in your life.

    Jeanette Sent from my iPad

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  2. Dear Jennifer,

    It is good to know that everything went well at your Mother’s funeral, and that you experienced a sense of ‘closure’.

    I was grateful for the opportunity to contribute towards the SPCA North Shore satellite facility in the name of your Mother.

    We hope and trust that your health issues are coming under some sort of control and that you are starting to feel more well.

    With love to you and Brian,

    Joanna and Roger.

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  3. Kia ora Jennifer,

    May the Lord guide you into this next phase of life, as you and Brian get through this time. As I met your Mum just that one time, I think how honoured I am in having met her. She seemed more like your best friend, more than your Mum. After her funeral, I realised how humble she was, because she didn’t “blow” her own trumpet, whereas others may have done so. Her life story would have been an awesome read but, as it is, parts of her story remain in your heart.

    As life begins to take on a new sense of normality, your Mum will always be with you … in your thoughts, heart and mind! I was so honoured to be in attendance, as we farewelled her. Take heart in the knowledge that your Mum has made a great impact on many lives, and that you were born from such an amazing lady.

    Arohanui,

    Mahuika xxx

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