Officiating my first funeral–it can be a challenge

I will be officiating my first funeral and will deliver a short sermon to the family and friends of a deceased woman. I’m struggling a little about how and what to say because I did not know the person and did not know what her faith walk was like while she was alive. To know for certain whether she had faith or none at all would be easier. Not knowing seems to make it more difficult. The risk is that I might over-attribute or under-attribute her faith in the Lord. If I over-attribute, I would be saying too much. If I under-attribute, I would be saying too little. Maybe I should say nothing of her faith at all and just preach the gospel of Jesus Christ to her family and friends? Yes, I think I will do just that.

Regarding a similar issue of funerals, this week, I couldn’t help wonder what I would do if I had to officiate and preach a sermon at the funeral of the late Michael Jackson [I don’t know why I’m still talking about this guy. Maybe he’s more significant to me than I thought?]. Did he have any faith in Jesus at all? Did he truly convert to Islam, or what was the religion the tabloids said he adhere to…I do not really know. Would I be able to say that he “has been reunited with Christ and his heavenly Father”? If I’m not sure about that, I would be doing a disservice to his family by giving them a false hope, or to say that he’s on his way to heaven or to hell would not be right. Only God knows what happened to his soul. Boy, I’m glad I’m not officiating the funeral for Michael Jackson.

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Author: Kevin S.

A follower of Jesus, a husband and a father. Hobbies include biking, keeping fish if they don't die on me, blogging when I can, theologizing and ministry, and pondering about world affairs.

2 thoughts on “Officiating my first funeral–it can be a challenge”

  1. Howdy. Funerals can be a challenge. But the key thing to remember is that you are not presenting a eulogy (good words about the person) but the Gospel (evangel = good news about Jesus). There is a world of difference. This may be your only time to reach some of these people with what Jesus Christ has done for them. Put the opportunity to good use.

    Blessings in Christ.

    Like

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