I’ve been meaning to write down my wishes for my funeral, but time never seems to allow. Since I’m trying to convince anyone who cares about this little blog that I’ve not abandoned it or you, dear reader, I will now kill two birds with one stone. What follows are instructions for my funeral.
- There will be no immediate canonization. I’ve been to funerals where it was literally stated by the priest that NAME is now in Heaven, waiting for us to join him. No. We can’t know this to be true. We can hope this is true. However, I’m asking you now for your fervent and continuous prayers for the repose of my soul and that I may be out of Purgatory as quickly as possible. Please have lots of Masses said for me.
- No “Eagles Wings”. Yoohoo! Please banish the guitars and the Haugen/Haas/Joncas monopoly for one day.
- No eulogy by my friends or family members. Please say nice things about me. But do it at the funeral home, the grave site or at the local pub. For that matter, make a Facebook group in my honor. However, I want my funeral Mass to be full-on about Salvation. If I was a nice guy, I’d love for y’all to hear about it. But my funeral is not the time nor the place.
- Smoke ’em if you got ’em. By this I mean I want incense to form a cloud visible on Doppler radar. To be frank, I feel a little cheated because I’ve not smelled nor seen incense at my parish except for one Mass this Advent and Christmas season.
I want a man to smell his jacket a week later and say “Wow – They really laid it on thick at Keough’s funeral.”
- If at all possible have the alter servers dressed in cassock and surplus. I never cared for the little hoodies and rope belts look. It is fine for the Franciscans. My middle name is Francis, but I think the black and white look is more fitting for this occasion.
These are simple requests, no? If these simple instructions are honored I promise not to haunt you to your dying days. Ok?
UPDATE: Monsignor Charles Pope has an excellent series on Funeral Foibles. I quote:
Thus instant promotions of the deceased to the upper realms of heaven are inappropriate. Rather, we give them to the Lord with our prayers, asking for a merciful and kindly judgment, and that any necessary purification be accomplished soon. The prayers for, and comments about the deceased can include gratitude for their life and the gifts they brought, but ought never to fail to mention that they go to judgment and should not gloss over the need to pray for them, more than praise them.
That’s what I’m talkin’ about!
Image courtesy of jdbradly