Funerals

Funerals

God’s love and power extend over all creation. Every life, including our own, is precious to God. Christians have always believed that there is hope in death as in life, and that there is new life in Christ over death. [From the Pastoral Introduction to the Church of England Funeral Service].

All are welcome to use St Etheldreda or St Luke’s church for funeral services, whether families have a particular connection with the Church or not. There are a number of advantages to having a funeral service in church:

  • The church building is a place where local people have, for centuries, celebrated the whole of life – and so it offers a more positive context in which to thank God for the life of a loved one.
  • Service timings can often be flexible.
  • St Etheldreda can comfortably accommodate about 300 people, and St Luke’s about 50.

Please note that both churchyards are closed for burials, but within St Luke’s there is a dedicated area for the burial of ashes.

When arranging a funeral, the first port of call is usually the Funeral Director, who will then contact the clergy to arrange the service at the crematorium or in church. However, you may like to approach the clergy direct. The Minister conducting the service will arrange a time to visit you at home to discuss the service and assist in making the necessary arrangements.

Memorial Services

Once a year we hold special Memorial Services where all those whose funerals have taken place in the previous twelve months are remembered by name and candles are lit in their memory. Invitations are automatically sent to the families concerned, but it is always possible to include additional names. 

Prayers at a time of Bereavement

O God, who brought us to birth, 
and in whose arms we die, 
in our grief and shock contain and comfort us; 
embrace us with your love, 
give us hope in our confusion 
and grace to let go into new life; 
through Jesus Christ. 
Amen.

Risen Lord Jesus, 
draw near to us as we walk this lonely road. 
Pierce our weary sorrow 
and gladden our heavy hearts as you go with us, 
and bring us in the end to your heavenly table 
Amen.

Fr Darren Collins 
Team Rector of Bishops Hatfield
07453 624061