Uplifting funeral hymns: How To Find That “Right” Song
When organizing music for a funeral, there are many songs to choose from. The two broad categories are “Contemporary/Personal” and “Traditional/Religious”. Possibly those organizing the memorial service consider songs by regarding the feelings of the bereaved only, but traditional discernment says that optimum strategy is to utilize songs that mirror the spirit of the life that was lived and awakens recollections of their essence, personality, and all the reasons why we thought the world of them and will miss them.
The number one , intent and objective of music in a funeral therefore is to suitably capture, celebrate the spirit and portray of a loved one. When performed gently– the typical way most of us would expect in a, the can certainly direct the mood and shape of the ceremony by helping remind mourners of a living soul who had a warm, gentle, and caring spirit and has now moved on to a much better place.
Likewise, music played with a more up-tempo and robust flavor may bring to mind memories of fun, high jinks, and merriment that were experienced with someone who made you feel great just by being alive in their proximity.
Even in cases where The Departed One was not a very sweet person and we may perhaps possibly find ourselves more inclined to want to sing, “Ding, Dong, The _____ Is Dead”, wisdom dictates that we at least ATTEMPT to look for something favorable regarding, about, or around them and reflect that in the songs that are elected for this occasion.
Selecting The Music
Most funerals have spiritual overtones and are celebrated in a church or chapel, because even in situations where the deceased wasn’t churchly, the family often is. Traditional songs chosen for funerals are classical or usually religious, and more often than not are performed in a somber and soft manner. These traditional religious songs are typically hymns or songs that have been passed down through generations and are common to people who go to church at least semi-regularly– like once or twice a month.
Uplifting funeral hymns
These normally Christian-based songs have a word of hope of everlasting life which speaks to both the deceased and the bereaved people at the service, and it is because of that message that the Gospel-style Christian songs are so joyful, uplifting, and upbeat. They remind us that dying is just a transition from this life to the next, where the tears we shed today as a result of a temporary loss of fellowship will turn to exceeding joy due to our gain of eternal association in heaven, so it is not unusual to hear Gospel music sung and played at many funerals today.
Although it is not uncustomary these days to move away from traditional songs in order to match a wish of The Departed or someone really close to them, it is critical that if you are going to do so you should make sure to verbally or in the written program explain to the congregation why this song is included, especially if it might appear to the average person that it is such a complete deviation from the norm that they would be offended– thinking that someone is being disrespectful.
It is fundamental to consult those nearest to the deceased if you are needing a more personalized song selection over a more traditional set. You may want to ask a spouse or a parent, or a brother, sister, or good friend who can suggest songs that the deceased may have loved at earlier points in their life.
Music For The “Marches”.
You should also remember that there are spaces for three or four more songs in the time of the “funeral marches”. There’s the march of family members as they enter the tabernacle, there’s another procession when they walk past the coffin, a third one is as they go out of the church, and a fourth might be as the casket is being taken from the church. Depending upon customs and/or desires and/or beliefs, these songs can be totally quiet and mournful, rejoicing and rousing, or anywhere in the midst.
Graveside Music, Yes Or No?
Sometimes, as a final parting salutation, families will want a family member or friend to perform a special song at the place of interment. If there is a non-traditional song that someone close to the deceased wanted done but you felt it questionable for use in the chapel or church service, here would be a good place to do it. Otherwise you can get good ideas from the minister administering over the graveside ceremony, or the funeral director, or the music minister for your church. I have participated in many services where no funeral music at all was done at the graveside and everyone was OK with that.