Sunday, October 10

Funeral Service

One of the things I wanted to make sure that I did before deciding to become Orthodox Christian is to read the prayers for the dead and the Funeral Service. After all, it's not in every church that you know ahead of time what they will say about you when you are gone... :-)

I found a few phrases to be breathtakingly beautiful, and I thought I would share:

From a series of prayers for the dead:

“O God of spirits and of all flesh, who has trampled down Death, and made powerless the Devil, and given life to thy world: Do Thou, the same Lord, give rest to the soul of Thy departed servant (name), in a place of brightness, a place of verdure*, a place of repose, whence all sickness, sorrow and sighing have fled away…”

From the actual Funeral Service:

“I am an image of Thy glory ineffable**, though I bear the brands of transgressions: Show thy compassions upon Thy creature, O Master, and purify me by thy loving-kindness; and grant unto me the home-country of my heart’s desire, making me again a citizen of Paradise.”

“Let us go forth, and gaze into the tombs: man is naked bones, food for the worms, and stench; and we shall learn what are riches, and comeliness, and beauty, and strength.”

* 1: the greenness of growing vegetation; also : such vegetation itself
   2: a condition of health and vigor

** indescribable

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