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The death of a loved friend or family member is obviously usually a tragic time, and can/will bring various emotions.
You do not have to use a Funeral Director, but most people find it very helpful to let an Undertaker 'undertake' many tasks at a difficult and often challenging time.
If you have not already considered a funeral director, then in the parish of St Aidan Skelmanthorpe we are very lucky to have nearby some local truly family run firms that give an excellent personal service (also see 'Funeral Plan' advice below).
Some services take place within the Church followed by burial or cremation; and some services take place entirely at a crematorium.
For further information please feel free to contact me (Philip, parish priest) without obligation: eg, email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 07805 509469
If you know of any mourners coming to St Aidan's Church who are wheelchair users, then please let them now that we now have an all-ability entrance on the south wall of the church. Our Church, including a loo, is fully wheelchair accessible.
For those departed dead whom you love: May light perpetual shine upon them, may they rest in peace, and rise in glory. Jesu mercy, Mary pray
Some memories of them may bring tears, and it is right to express feelings and emotions. Other memories will bring smiles about the way they were and are. Hold on to those memories, and hold on to promise of Jesus, that there is life eternal. Not just "Rest in peace" (which is just freedom from the pains, illnesses and difficulties often experienced in this stage of life), but a continuing life of love, creativity, exploration, delight and beautiful relationships, and so on; as all creation becomes what it is meant to be.
The truth of life eternal doesn't take away the pain you may be feeling. The truth of life eternal shouldn't stop us living this stage of life as richly and fully as possible. But hold onto the reality of continuing life eternal, as you hold on to those good memories of the departed, for parting is not forever.
Jesus said, "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God still, and trust in Me. There are many rooms in My Father's house; if there were not, I would have told you. I am going now to prepare a place for you, and after I have gone and prepared you a place, I shall return to take you with me: so that where I am, you may be too.'' [John 14]
At St Aidan, Skelmanthorpe, we have an annual Requiem Sung Mass where we remember the departed by name, usually in the evening of the last Sunday in October, to which we invite the family and friends of those who have died over the last twelve months. At other times we can offer a separate Requiem low mass for the soul of anyone you wish prayed for, and/or offer them as the ''Intention'' of our Sunday or weekday mass.
If you are reading this, but the funeral of your loved one took place in another parish, then please contact them, for it is very likely that most other parishes also offer some sort of memorial service - though we are happy to offer prayer for them as well, if you wish (see also the ''Prayer and Votive Candles'' page of this website)
PS: Some personal advice by Philip on ''Funeral Plans'': Please make sure that if you wish to take out a Funeral Plan that you go to your local independent funeral director. The plans they have are properly regulated, and are aimed at providing what you want. Funeral plans from other sources (including charities for the aged, banks and building societies, financial advisors, insurance companies, etc) are generally aimed at making large profits from large percentage fees, often with hidden costs, taking from your hard-earned savings. This can also mean that the actual cost of a funeral is not fully covered. Such profit-motivated plans may also link you into a large impersonal organisation which will deny you the right to chose your own undertaker, and may limit the sort of funeral you may actually want (the where and what and who). If we want a tyre we don't go to a baker. If we want bread we don't go to a tyre fitter: and so, if one wishes to have a funeral plan, then go to a local independent funeral director. They will treat you fairly, advise you as to whether a funeral plan is worth it for your circumstances or not, and then provide the funeral you require.
PPS: Note to any Funeral Directors. I am very grateful if any funeral fees could be paid in cash or via the Banking BACS system (I can give youi the sort code and account number), rather than via cheques if at all possible. In our rural area, as in so many other places, virtually all local banks have closed making it difficult to deal with cheques without travelling into a town or city. From April 2018 this request is superceded since all funeral fees must be paid directly to the Leeds (Anglican) Diocesan Board of Finance.
Baptism, Wedding & Funeral notes held by Philip at St Aidan, Skelmanthorpe. Some of you may be aware that I am retiring next year, and the paper notes/records I hold on family events will be industrially shredded probably in February 2019 under data protection laws. If a Baptism candidate or their parent/s, a wedding couple, or the immediate next of kin of a deceased person would like a copy of the notes held by me (which may not be that extensive or exciting) for their family records, then please feel free to get in touch: text 07805 509469 or email email@example.com. Please remember to give me the date of the event and relevant name/s, not to mention your current address; because after 31 years of nearly 300 weddings and nearly 900 Christenings my memory is not that good. Obviously the officail registers are due to be kept in perpetuity, I'm just referring to my notes which may not be that interesting? Please feel free to pass on this information to anyone who might be interested. Thank you, Philip