Comments for en-gb 30 Fri 25 Jul 2014 09:27:44 GMT+1 A feed of user comments from the page found at Redheylin 58 - You may be unaware that "All things" has a verse in which the children sing that they accept the rich are rich and the poor are poor because such is the will of the supreme being. 57 - If I wanted Jesus in the service, I'd avoid all the many churches I have attended: they seem most loth to dwell upon that person's sayings and doings. Wed 21 Oct 2009 23:38:00 GMT+1 Kev Simpson @57. Or is it because most other hymns are about fighting and killing those who disbelieve, or how "great" a mystical being is, or how bad we all are for not worshipping him properly, regularly, enough, or how humble and scraping we should be, or..?In my experience lyrics from hymns are some of the worst, violent, misogynistic, pro-murder, pro-war, pro-fighting rubbish you can find anywhere. The gangsta rap of its day, methinks. Wed 21 Oct 2009 16:59:53 GMT+1 vainly_here If you look carefully in the Prayer Book, you will find that it says that form of service may not be used for those who "Have laid violent hands upon themselves." So there must have been an alternative since 1662 at least.Personally, I hope my funeral will contain a lot more about Jesus than about me.Incidentally, in our local crematorium the hymnbook opens almost automatically at "All things bright and beautiful." Is this an indication that most attenders have not sung any hymns since childhood? Wed 21 Oct 2009 11:58:10 GMT+1 patmartin My brother in law had a humanist funeral a few years ago, held in the local crematorium. One week I was listening to a woman who officiated at such funerals on Home Truths with John Peel and two weeks later the same woman was officiating at my brother in Law's funeral and doing a splendid job. I'd no idea before that that such things existed but my husband and I have bothe decided that if she outlives us we'd like her to be present at our funerals. Ive chose Dr Hook's More Like the Movies to be played at mine. A friend of ours had Momma Said There'd be Days Like These as his coffin was carried to the crematorium on his narrow boat. Wed 21 Oct 2009 11:53:30 GMT+1 TheShadowalker Surely the funeral should reflect the deceased person's beliefs? My late father had a humanist service, and it was what we as a family wanted. My father wasn't a great churchgoer, and to ask for a church funeral would have been inappropriate to say the least.The humanist "minister" (for want of a better term) was far more helpful than our local vicar who seemd to disapprove of every option that the family wanted - including the music. I personally didn't see what was wrong with Mike Oldfield's Tubular Bells I, Jean Michelle Jarre Oxygene (for the committal - it was a cremation) and Barbers Adagio for Strings as we left the crematorium. They were all pieces of music that my father liked, and that was what mattered. Wed 21 Oct 2009 10:55:50 GMT+1 David_McNickle e 42, Might as well get them started on their way with a cremation then.G 51, If you are talking C of E, check out their rules about funerals, marriages, baptisms, etc. Then come back and talk sense. Wed 21 Oct 2009 10:33:49 GMT+1 Redheylin 49 - you a Kendalian? Wed 21 Oct 2009 07:30:58 GMT+1 Looternite I am getting a bit cheesed off with this god botherer.If the deceased was a Christian then treat them as such. The friends and family my be of another belief or none.What are you doing, sending off a dearly departed fellow christian, or providing a show for the people seeing off the person.Your God expects you to treat the departed properly. Tue 20 Oct 2009 21:45:54 GMT+1 Glickstein If the sky pilot doesn't like the music he should insist that only practising members of his congregation should use his church for funerals, all others should be passed on to the humanists or other suitable organisation. Or is there a monetary reason why people are not turned away? Tue 20 Oct 2009 20:58:04 GMT+1 annasee Blogarooney - good on you for sorting all that out in advance. My mother says she wants to be composted, which, while an admirable sentiment, may prove a little difficult in the fulfilling, I fear. By-laws and all that.I think the crassest statement I heard at a funeral was a vicar (who clearly didn't know the deceased) saying to her desperately grieving family "You know, God never takes anything away without giving you back something even better". I spent the next few seconds pondering what on EARTH he meant by that (a new wife, younger & more improved, perhaps?) before I realised he was waffling on about a new life everlasting in Heaven, etc. Wouldn't have made me feel any better, I'm afraid. The humanist funerals have definitely been more personal and individual, in my experience so far. Full of participation from the relatives too, which has to be a good thing. Tue 20 Oct 2009 20:29:04 GMT+1 GotToTheEnd My mother wouldn't have missed being cremated by the Rev. Ernest Forward for worlds, good Non-Conformist that she was. Tue 20 Oct 2009 19:59:18 GMT+1 fourowls Surely the point that the rev was making is that HE was there when all else was secular...he felt like the lemon. Why ask for a Christian minister if we don't want the christian content? Anybody has the right to design whatever act of remembrance they wish..but if we invite the Christian minister then we shouldn't we expect some Christian content? Tue 20 Oct 2009 19:58:39 GMT+1 Blogarooney Like many, we have made our wills, sorted the executor to administer the wills, made arrangements for the kids and, in the paper work, made it clear that it will be a humanist service, a cardboard coffin under a tree in a nice spot (there is a grand place available in the country up here). Only thing left to do is the playlist whihc I will get round to one of these days. The worst funeral I ever went to was conducted by a slightly inebriated and totally disinterested priest who conducted my old mum's funeral in the pouring rain one grey London day. She had been a pious catholic all her life and her sad farewell was marred by crass indifference which typified for me the hypocrisy of a church out of touch with humanity. In contrast, the best funeral if you can call it that, was for a bright and talented young man of our family's acquaintance who sadly took his own life and whose funeral was conducted with incredible warmth, sensitivity and humour by a wonderful Humanist in Sheffield.onsider a humanist service. We all make our choices in life and death. I hope more people will consider a humanist service. They are prepared with great attention to detail about the person's life which makes such a difference to the bereaved. Tue 20 Oct 2009 19:12:55 GMT+1 Hawk This post has been Removed Tue 20 Oct 2009 19:07:30 GMT+1 profoundchayes oh dear oh dear, another dinosaur puts his head above the parapet and makes himself look ridiculous. then to cap it all he says that such non-christian people will fail to wake up on judgement day. no wonder so many churches are finding less and less people coming to services. the church has controlled peoples lives for the last two thousand years but that is slowly becoming a thing of the past.there is a new spirituality emerging based on proof that the spirit world surrounds us in a much faster vibration. this gives everyone the freedom to access a new philosophy of living. the aquarian age of the freedom of the individual is now with us. funerals are to celebrate the life not to mourn and i see no problem at all in playing whatever music the family wishes that help them to remember the loved one who has passed.this dinosaur will go the same way as all the others did and not a moment too soon. if anybody wishes to discover the origins of christianity and how man corrupted the simple truths that the nazerine brought i suggest you read "the unfolding universe" by Arther Findlay. Tue 20 Oct 2009 17:57:56 GMT+1 lordBeddGelert Jayfell 39 - You have me 'bang to rights'. My point was merely that neither of those two songs is more or less 'religious' nor 'classical'. Tue 20 Oct 2009 17:14:40 GMT+1 Redheylin "What's god got to do, got to do with it?What's god but a second hand devotion?What's god got to do, got to do with it?Who needs a god that's no more than a token?" Tue 20 Oct 2009 17:08:19 GMT+1 Terry The central doctrine of Christian denominsations is that you burn in hell forever when you die if you do not share their doctrine. Is he really surprised that this idea has lost some of its allure? Surely not. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:59:42 GMT+1 Kev Simpson More religious bleating because society is moving on and doesn't find what it needs in a bunch of people who dress in black and go around telling everyone what to think any more.Instead of whining to us about it, why doesn't the priest just educate those coming to him with funeral plans that he considers ill fitted to his brand of supernatural mysticism? Why not just explain that the plans they have would be better suited to a non-religious send-off and recommend a secular funeral and a secular speaker?He clearly considers these people to be unworthy of his magic, mumblings and chants, so why does he persist in providing them with an unsuitable ceremony? Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:58:10 GMT+1 threeblackanimals It was obviously a shame we couldn't hear both sides of the argument tonight, but as the Humanist said, "No one is forced to have a Humanist funeral", and equally, no one is forced to have a Christian one. If you choose to be cremated/buried and have the service led by someone from the clergy, then you should be aware that some music is not appropriate for a Christian service. If you have a problem with that, have a Humanist service. If you're already dead and it's your family making the decisions, you are well out of it. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:56:20 GMT+1 Jayfell Earlier, lordBeddGelert wrote:"....I think he could be a bit more tolerant of Sinatra's 'My Way..' which is surely only a twentieth century version of "You'll never walk alone." ? Can lordBeddGelert please explain what is not 20th Century about "You'll never walk alone." which first appeared as a show tune in the musical Carousel - first performed in the year 1945 which I believe was classed as 20th Century. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:56:11 GMT+1 David_McNickle aw 16, The Co-op does funerals.The funeral for my father-in-law was held in a crematorium and his ashes were scattered in the Thames because that's what he wanted.Seems to be a lot of sour-pussed non-Christians around here. I thought it was the other way round. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:55:31 GMT+1 CatLockhart Like no. 25, I arranged a Humanist funeral for my husband, with music that he loved and a eulogy written by me. I was determined to have a funeral whose central focus was him - far too many of the Christian funerals I have attended have been mostly about god and little about the deceased. At one Catholic funeral of a colleague, the deceased featured only as 'a poor sinner', and we had a tale about the priest's social life. At most Church of Scotland funerals, god comes out of it really well, to the exclusion of the deceased. The Humanist funeral (like the Humanist wedding ceremony) is ideal for those of us who have no truck with religion. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:54:52 GMT+1 pithywriter Eddie, why didn't you ask HIlary Benn (Mr complacement) why these CEO's are not imprisoned. Nothing will change otherwise will it! Killing the environment and the so the creatures who depend on it (ultimately us too) is akin to the crime of murder after all. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:47:27 GMT+1 Redheylin Some clarification in monotheism?I have heard a story that after the war ended, one German general was staying with an English friend. At the tea table the talk drifted towards the second world war. The German said, "I have always wondered what went wrong. We were strong, we had a rare leader, we had unity, we had a strong nation. What went wrong?" The Englishman said, "Perhaps you forgot to pray to God." The German said, "No! We were praying to God every day. All our armies were praying to God every day." The Englishman laughed and said, "Then I know what is wrong. You must be praying in German, and God understands only English! Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:46:47 GMT+1 nicholas13 So spending his life preaching about what is almost certainly a fiction doesn't already make the good vicar already "feel like a lemon"? What music people choose at their funerals is the last thing he needs to be thinking seriously about. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:45:32 GMT+1 jollyBusybody I think My Way is the most dreadful song ever written as it is totally self indulgent - even Frank Sinatra hated it. I'm not a Christian so there won't be any hymns at my funeral. My father was an agnostic and the vicar who took his service at the crematorium was quite happy with everything we chose - same with my Mum. My husband and children are under strict instructions to ask for any religious symbols or pictures to be removed for my funeral but hopefully they will arrange a 'green' one in the open air so there won't be any need. I'd love for them to play the Archers theme tune since I've heard it almost every day of my life! I don't mind a bit of humour at a funeral but music is such a difficult thing - you can love or hate it with a passion. The vicar could allow some secular poetry and music but no harm in reminding people that he's a vicar in a Christian church and guide them towards an appropriate hymn or two and a bible reading. The worst funeral I went to started with Shirley Bassey's My Life and ended with My Way. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:45:27 GMT+1 newlach I think the Reverend Ed Tomlinson has smeared the memory of the deceased by this outburst. He should not smear the memory of the deceased in this way. This is a low blow from a Christian. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:42:27 GMT+1 SimoneGordonRogers I think it is a reflection of the times obviously, I want The Kick Inside (by the decidedly ethereal Kate Bush) played when I snuff it, and that's a song about sex, incest AND death! But a beautiful lovesong and my absolute favourite, I don't give a damn what anyone else thinks. Until we start getting humanist atheist churches then I'm afraid the Christians are just going to have to put up with our heathen musical choices at funerals. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:42:04 GMT+1 Redheylin A child that attends a Christian school and asks who Jesus was is an intelligent child. Perhaps if they were told what Jesus said and did, rather than being told he is a god in the clouds who looks after you, there'd be less confusion. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:38:24 GMT+1 David_McNickle Sid 1, Could he refuse to do a gay wedding? Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:37:28 GMT+1 crescent When my stepmother died 2 years ago the vicar was incredibly bossy about what we could have at her funeral. We were allowed to choose the hymns but we weren't allowed to sing the psalms because he said the congregation didn't know how to - slightly missing the point that the vast majority of people at the funeral weren't going to be his congregation and were of the generation that was brought up to sing psalms. He wouldn't let us choose the blessing either. I wish she had lived in Tunbridge Wells where the church is clearly more flexible Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:37:01 GMT+1 GoodMummyKate A work colleague had been to a funeral and told me that a Bee Gees record had been played. With foot firmly in mouth I said the first BeeGees song that came into my head..... 'Staying Alive'. Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:36:32 GMT+1 Redheylin 22 I think Annasee has a point - the church is just the default for people who have no great preference. (This came about largely because of centuries of killing people who would not go along with it) Most people want some kind of "spiritual" celebration of death - that goes back hundreds of thousands of years - and only for a few decades have we been free to choose. That does not mean that we found any value in the rites the church chose to inflict upon us. I'd ask the Reverend, when he finds himself standing there "like a lemon" while the bereaved do their thing, to meditate upon the untold millions of bereaved who had no option but to stand there like lemons while the Reverend did HIS thing! Tue 20 Oct 2009 16:24:32 GMT+1 princessratkin For once I'm in agreement with a clergyman. I am a humanist, and my beloved husband was cremated, with music of my choice, a humanist celebrant, and I wrote the main eulogy. Churches have, in my opinion, had their day. Tue 20 Oct 2009 15:47:37 GMT+1 jayfurneaux #23. Ah, I think I’m getting it; all religions think they are right and the others are absolutely wrong, even though the 3 Abrahamic religions claim to spring from the same traditions etc.It’s a case of my invisible friend is better than your invisible friend; and when push comes to shove we’ll fight over which invisible friend is considered ‘best’.It all sounds pretty daft to me; but I agree people should be allowed to believe what they want, provided they don’t try and force others to live their lives in accordance with their beliefs or force those beliefs upon them unwillingly.Perhaps Father Tomlinson just doesn’t yet realise that nowadays people don’t believe in his invisible friend as much as he does. Tue 20 Oct 2009 15:12:11 GMT+1 lordBeddGelert Jay, Jay, Jay.. If your view was what happened in practice the religions of the world would be like supermarkets who said "We don't mind you popping into Sainsbury's, Morrison's or Waitrose during the week, as long as you do your main shopping at Tesco at the weekend. You can even pop into the farmer's market once a month when it visits your town.." Do you really think religion would have taken over the world with that sort of namby-pamby 'let it all hang out' approach. It would be a bit like Apple commissioning an advert which said "Yes, and you can a buy a PC as well - they are just as cool, if not quite as nice looking, and a heck of a lot cheaper.." No No NO ! The whole point of 'monotheism' is that not only do they only worship ONE god, but that their god [Or God or G_d] is the ONLY one - and what is being worshipped by EVERYONE else is not only the 'wrong one' or 'not even a god' but actually the path to perdition [of whatever flavour they describe]. Heavens to betsy - if that were not the case, people would just 'hedge their bets' by going to the Temple on Saturday, Church on Sunday and Mosque on Tuesday. Do you think religion would flourish if that were the case ? It would be about as likely as Tesco now taking one pound in every eight spent in the UK with Terry Leahy having said ten years ago, "Well, every other shop's food is as good as ours - and we don't really want people to use Tesco as a 'one-stop-shop' - they would get jolly bored if they didn't enjoy the 'spice of life' - variety - by only spending half their grocery budget with us". Trust me - the idea that the 3 Abrahamic religions want to co-exist with each other is a pipe-dream - they are just as jealous for converts as the supermarkets are for customers, even if their product is free. Having said that I'm still a big believer in personal freedom for people to follow these religions, but we do have to ensure that other people's rights are respected as well - even if as we saw yesterday getting that balance right is likely to be one of the defining debates of this century. Tue 20 Oct 2009 14:41:38 GMT+1 annasee I couldn't get the link to work, but surely these days no-one has to have a funeral in church if they don't want to? If you've no belief in God, or wish for a religious service to mark your death, I think it's possible to have a non-religious service either at a cemetery chapel, a crematorium, or anywhere else licenced for the business. I've played at humanist funerals, on a farm, and in a green field by the graveside. I don't see the problem. There are celebrants who will come out and do a nice talk about the deceased, and lead a service of farewell with no religious references, and often other family members provide anecdotes. They have been some of my most memorable funerals! Maybe it's just a question of these alternative funerals being more widely discussed, so people realise church and a vicar is not the only option? Tue 20 Oct 2009 14:34:58 GMT+1 thomasfriese Dear Father Ed,BBC World Radio called me 30min ago with an invitation to participate in a radio debate on your comments. They tracked me down through my own non-profit cemetery initiative Perpetua's Garden ( hoping I would take the "alternative" side in the question of "Tina Turner-esque" funerals. I did not give them an answer - they in any case still needed to find the "traditionalist".I am not an "anti-traditionalist" - tradition has it's place, just as innovation and adaptation does. So I will have to decline. But I would make some comments here:Death is the last and most personal event in every human life - of an atheist's, a humanist's, an Anglican's, of everyone's. As such, absolute freedom should be allowed to celebrate as the individual wants, however deeply we may lament their choices or lack of interest. This includes Tina Turner music, an traditional Anglican ceremony, or simply abandoning the cremated remains at the crematorium.This is inalienable personal choice - every choice has an equal right to exist. But each choice also has its own place, and the place and the right must fit - if someone wants a ceremony in an Anglican church, the Anglican Church should have some say in what is allowed. If what they want is unacceptable to the Church, then perhaps the Church is not the right place for them.We may deeply lament the fact that such superficial attention is given in our society to such an important transition and sincerely believe we know better. But if that is so, then it is up to us to convince others of its importance, show them that how we celebrate a life and memorialize it is not irrelevent. If people are moving away from religious funerals, then evidently the Church needs to learn something - not to change its views, but to teach them in more contemporary ways. But this is another whole story...Thank you in any case for your comments - right or wrong, they stimulate debate and THAT is the most critical thing of all for this issue. Visit Perpetua's Garden to understand my perspective - absolute freedom of choice is one basic premise of it.Thomas Friese Tue 20 Oct 2009 14:15:04 GMT+1 needsanewnickname What about persons immortal, though, mansaylo? Tue 20 Oct 2009 14:12:57 GMT+1 Looternite Thank God I'm an Atheist, also thank Christ for Christmas. Tue 20 Oct 2009 14:10:29 GMT+1 Trevor Mansell They've recently discovered another Dead Sea scroll. After translation it turned out to be a disclaimer for the Bible. Loosely translated it starts off " References to any person living or dead is purely conicidental............" Tue 20 Oct 2009 13:58:29 GMT+1 jayfurneaux “You haven't quite gotten the point of this monotheism concept have you?” # 15Monotheism is the belief that only one god exists. Christianity, Judaism, Islam and Sikhism are all monotheistic (OK, I agree Hindus are polytheistic) don’t they all share the same ‘god’? Or does only one religion actually have a God and the others are just deluded? Or is it that one religion’s God is better that the others? (Oh no, that would mean they’re not monothestic…) If so, how could I tell? Or is it all perhaps just age old superstitions and fantasy from different cultures of the world? Tue 20 Oct 2009 13:52:26 GMT+1 AlexisWolf Doesn't Tesco do funerals? Tue 20 Oct 2009 13:43:14 GMT+1 lordBeddGelert jayfurneaux - [BG buries face in hands...] You haven't quite gotten the point of this monotheism concept have you ?? Tue 20 Oct 2009 13:19:53 GMT+1 GarryLH I have found that so called Christian churches stopped supporting/teaching real biblical teachings and have moved on to more popularist ideologies forsaking the truth of the teachings in the Hebrew and Christian Greek scriptures. Case in point, "Though shall not bow down to images", what do they do? They make all these images of the Madonna, Mary and Jesus and wear (non Christian!) crosses all of which are revered and venerated! They even worship the national flag depending on what country they are from! The congregation are so used to non Christian ideologies being taught from the pulpit that it is only a natural progression for them to expect non Christian funerals as an extension of these teachings. If Ed Tomlinson is so worried about non Christian funerals perhaps he should start teaching what the bible really says instead of what his church want him to teach to get bums on pews and then his congregation will come to realise what is expected of them in their church! Tue 20 Oct 2009 13:10:11 GMT+1 jayfurneaux “Earlier this year a Sunday Times journalist who was nominally Catholic wrote that her 10 year old son had a working knowledge of Sikhism, Islam and Hinduism but asked her "Who was Jesus?"#7But under a monotheistic system aren’t all religions supposed to worship the same God, regardless of the name it goes under? Or are some peoples’ ‘God’ less than equal to the Christian one, despite being stated as being one and the same? Tue 20 Oct 2009 13:08:29 GMT+1 fredforest I made my views known about not having a funeral and a formal burial and my family were not impressed.I tried to explain that these ceremonies were for the bereaved and not the dead, which my daughter accepted, but my wife is unmoved. She is not impressed by my wish that everyone turn up for a party instead.If I put it in my will I will cause more uptset to my wife as that is legally binding. Tue 20 Oct 2009 12:57:27 GMT+1 SheffTim It can be difficult to get the type of service the deceased would have wanted. Often once someone has dies the doctor or police tip off a local undertaker so that the body can be taken care of. (The bereaved, particularly if elderly, are often too numbed to take such a quick decision themselves). Undertakers supply a full range of services (with accompanying price lists) including arranging a service at a church (if the vicar/priest agrees and interment in a cemetery etc) or a memorial service at a crematorium. Many people don’t know of the range of options that are available and just go with something vaguely ‘traditional’; irrespective of personal belief. The Rev Tomlinson is right in saying that many people just play safe and go with what they feel is normally expected of such occasions; be they weddings or funerals.Another option is to ask the undertaker to conduct the service, but this can also be unsatisfactory. Many have only observed religious services and base their own efforts on those. Many of the classic poems etc about death also have some kind of spiritual element.If someone does want a non-religious ceremony then they need to make this clear to their relatives and plan out in detail the type of ceremony (if any) they wish. The local Humanist society may be able to provide someone with experience in conducting non-religious ceremonies.A good book for those wanting something less traditional is ‘The Dead Good Funeral Book’ by Gill & Fox.The Rev Tomlinson could solve his problem by stating that he is only prepared to officiate at funerals of those that have been regular attendees of his church services. He many do far fewer funerals, but at least he’d be able to be more certain the deceased shared his views on an afterlife, existence of a personal God etc.Having sat through a funeral service for my father that I felt unsatisfactory (like his father before him he lost all his ‘belief’ during active service during a world war), even though the undertaker had been asked to make it non religious, I would suggest that people actively make plans for how their own end of life with be handled by their families and friends?I would also point that any kind of funeral can be surprisingly expensive, so financial planning should also be thought of. Tue 20 Oct 2009 12:43:31 GMT+1 lordBeddGelert More on death and religion..'d have thunk it, eh ? Tue 20 Oct 2009 12:43:08 GMT+1 theotherdaughter 5 and 6 - Why would the humanist society want to use the church? It will be cold and draughty (I know - I am one of the ones who go there voluntarily on Sundays) and full of christian imagery - no more suitable than the vicar to a humanist funeral.My Way is surely one of the 20th century ways of saying 'I didn't want or need God, or anyone else come to that' and again doesn't fit with the Church and vicar - I find it annoying too.If people wish to be secular, that is their right, and fine by me, but why should they expect a religious organisation to supply the facilities for their secularity? Nobody expects the favour to be reciprocated. Surely asking a vicar to officiate implies at the very least, lip service to his beliefs, and an expectation that he will expound them as he is paid to.tod Tue 20 Oct 2009 12:31:05 GMT+1 Sid I always thought "You'll never walk alone" was a twentieth century version of "You'll never walk alone." Tue 20 Oct 2009 12:13:06 GMT+1 giantJoe008 I will stand to be corrected but the C of E has a statuatory duty to christen, marry or bury anyone who wishes. It must also provide a seat for anyone living in a parish who requires one. I have read that in the late 19th and early 20th centuries Christian non-conformists compelled it to allow them use C of E churchyards for non-conformist burials. This just an indication of the way the education system has changed public attitudes. In return for giving up control of schools (1944 Act?) it was agreed that each school days would begin with a short "act of worship". For obvious reasons this is generally disregarded. Now older clergy have noted that when taking funerals 20 years ago however little of the service people knew they all knew the Lords Prayer and the 23rd Psalm. This is no longer the case.Earlier this year a Sunday Times journalist who was nominally Catholic wrote that her 10 year old son had a working knowledge of Sikhism, Islam and Hinduism but asked her "Who was Jesus?" I suppose the easiest answer would be the chap "Life of Brian" was about even if they said it wasn't. Tue 20 Oct 2009 12:05:55 GMT+1 lordBeddGelert I can understand him getting a bit frustrated at Tina Turner being played in a church, but I think he could be a bit more tolerant of Sinatra's 'My Way..' which is surely only a twentieth century version of "You'll never walk alone." ? Still, the 'hatching, matching and despatching' brigade are always a bit of an annoyance for the people who pay the bills for keeping the churches open and turn up week in, week out, just to be able to reassure those who never go that this is still nominally a 'Christian' country, despite the fact that if each 'attendance' was a 'vote' we would now be, democratically speaking, a moslem country. Tue 20 Oct 2009 12:02:59 GMT+1 Looternite I understand that the Humanist Society can supply people to officiate at secular funerals. Will the local church be available for the ceremony? Tue 20 Oct 2009 11:59:37 GMT+1 tug Father Tomlinson bemoans the fact that fewer and fewer people ask him to preside at their funerals and then holds those few who do ask in in contempt for their choice of words and music for the ceremony. Could there be a link here? Tue 20 Oct 2009 11:53:24 GMT+1 steelpulse This Vicar, Eddie. Do not the congregation point at the coffin and say - take you grief out on him or her? A lot of funerals follow the wishes of the deceased do they not? I have been puzzling over which Tina Turner ditty is used? Simply The Pest? I was goggling at something called Disco Inferno just now but realised it was only the Karaoke version of a selection of Ms Turner's songs. Thank goodness says I. I am nut bushed! Burn after reading! What has religion got to do with it? lolI plan to have a little Christian content myself but as I always stress - other religious beliefs are available! Tue 20 Oct 2009 11:39:40 GMT+1 jonnie I'm more curious as to why Tina Turner popped up. Did you type 'death' into the picture machine Eddie? Tue 20 Oct 2009 11:39:05 GMT+1 Sid Why does he have to take these funerals? Vicars have always been able to refuse christenings to non-believers (or non-practisers at least) - why can't they do the same with funerals? Personally, I'm not a believer, and I hope they won't take me anywhere near a church when I pop my atheistic clogs. Tue 20 Oct 2009 11:25:57 GMT+1