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Understanding the Idea Behind a Non-denominational Funeral Service
When a person who has passed away didn't follow one particular religion or faith, a non-denominational funeral can prove to be the most appropriate way to honor that person's life. Instead of focusing on religious texts during the ceremony, the family can choose to take a more humanistic approach. This makes for a poignant funeral, even without a religious element.
Even if the person who passed did loosely follow a religion, it is becoming increasingly common for families to use a non-denominational service in order to honor their loved one and commemorate their life. If you're hoping to have a non-denominational service for someone you care about, keep these tips in mind:
Choose your location carefully
It is certainly possible to have a non-denominational service in a house of worship, however many people feel more comfortable hosting the ceremony in a funeral home. If you don't feel comfortable having a member of the clergy presiding over the service, you may ask the funeral director to perform the service. Many people also find it special to have close friends or family members deliver eulogies during the ceremony.
In a non-denominational service, the focus is less on traditional prayers and shifts more to the words and sentiments of people who loved the deceased. This human, emotional touch is something that many people find appealing. It is also possible to incorporate a few traditional prayers and hymns, while still keeping the focus on the concrete ways in which that person touched lives.
If you don't feel comfortable asking those in attendance to participate in a prayer during the service, a moment of silence will be sufficient. This allows everyone to reflect on what the deceased meant to them, without forcing a religious element into a non-denominational service.
If you find words from religious texts comforting but still would prefer to have a non-denominational service, you can incorporate religious texts from a variety of different faiths. There is no rule that says that if you include verses from the Bible, then the service must have a decidedly Christian feel to it. You can read a verse from the Bible, then incorporate a part of a Buddhist text, and finish with a traditional Jewish prayer. Pick and choose the elements that you find most relevant, and create a service that feels comforting and warm to you.
When it comes to religious references during a non-denominational service, there is no need to feel as if you have to reference God, Jesus, or any other element of traditional religion in order to honor the person who has passed. You can simply make reference to finding peace in the afterlife and being commemorated in the hearts of loved ones.
If your loved one was not particularly religious, it is still possible to have a beautiful and meaningful ceremony, without a heavy religious presence. Using eulogies from loved ones and inspirational readings, it is easy to honor your loved one's life during a non-denominational ceremony.