The funeral service

The funeral service will reflect the personality of the person who has died and the circumstances of their death. Feelings of grief, gratitude, joy and sadness can often intermingle. Sometimes, a sense of tragedy is uppermost, especially when it is a young person who has died. When it is the end of a long and fruitful life, the feelings of thanksgiving can be strongest. Funeral services always raise profound questions about the meaning of life and death, but in every funeral service we look to find reasons for thanksgiving and celebration in having known the person who has died, and the joys which they brought into our lives.

Jesus himself believed in a life-giving God: ‘the God of the living, not of the dead‘. Christians believe that Christ’s resurrection is the triumph of good over evil and of life over death and that his resurrection shows us that death is not the end. What heaven is like, none of us dare say too precisely but we know that we shall delight in the presence and love of God and of the whole company of heaven. Whatever is wonderful about life here on earth is only a glimpse of the glory of the life in the Spirit that is to come.

The form of the service will be discussed with the member of the Clergy who is taking the funeral. You will be able to discuss your choice of hymns, music and readings. The priest may have some suggestions to help you, or you can decide with the help of your friends and family. There may also be tributes given by the family, and there will be a short address or a sermon remembering the life and work of the person who has died, and the great Christian beliefs about life beyond death.

If you would like to know more, or wish to discuss a funeral or bereavement with one of the clergy, please contact us and we will be in touch.

Burials and cremations

All the churches in our benefice have churchyards either surrounding the church or very close by. If a cremation service is chosen, the churchyards have space set aside for burying ashes.

If you have any queries or questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Headstones and Memorials

Headstone and memorials must comply with Oxford Diocesan Churchyard Regulations. These regulations help make sure that the churchyard is a place of peace and beauty for everyone to enjoy. You can find a copy of the regulations on the Diocesan website.

If you would like to know more, or if you wish to put up or alter a headstone in one of our churchyards, please discuss your requirements with the Rector.