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10 funeral prayers and blessings

open hands, praying at sunset

It’s considered to be an honour to be asked to give a eulogy or a reading at someone’s funeral.

A funeral poem is a beautiful way to express what just what the person meant to the people mourning them, while prayers or a blessings often bring great comfort.

The Lord’s Prayer is often part of the order of service at funerals centered around the Christian faith, but there are other prayers and non-religious blessings that are suitable for a friend or relative to offer up at a church funeral or celebration of life,.

These 10 blessings and prayers to say at a funeral may inspire you.

Funeral blessing for a loved one

May you always walk in sunshine,

and God’s around you flow.

For the happiness you gave us,

No one will ever know.

It broke our hearts to lose you,

But you did not go alone.

A part of us went with you

The day God called you home.

A million times we needed you

A million times we cried.

If love could only have saved you

You would’ve never died.

The Lord be with you and may you rest in peace.

A Celtic death blessing by John O’Donohue

I pray that you will have the blessing of being consoled.

May you know in your soul that there is no need to be afraid.

When your time comes, may you be given every blessing and shelter that you need.

May there be a beautiful welcome for you in the home that you are going to.

You are not going somewhere strange.

You are going back to the home that you never left.

May you have a wonderful urgency to live your life to the full.

May you live compassionately and creatively and transfigure everything that is negative within you and about you.

When you come to die may it be after a long life.

May you be peaceful and happy and in the presence of those who really care for you.

May your going be sheltered and your welcome assured.

May your soul smile in the embrace of your anam cara (soul friend).

Christian prayer for a loved one’s funeral

Dear Lord,

We are so grateful that you have made us all in your own image, giving us gifts and talents with which to serve you.

Thank you for (loved one’s name) life, and all the years we shared with him/her. We lift him/her to you today, in honour of the good we saw in him/her and the love we felt from him/her.

Please give us the strength to leave him/her in your care, in the knowledge of eternal life through Jesus Christ.

Amen

Catholic funeral prayer

O God, Creator and Redeemer

Of all Your faithful people

Grant to the souls of all our faithful departed

Your mercy, light and peace

Lord, we pray that those we love

Who have gone before us in faith

May know Your forgiveness for their sins

And the blessings of everlasting life

In the company with the Virgin Mary

And all the angels and saints in ancient Heaven

Amen

An Apache grief blessing

May the sun bring you energy everyday, bringing light into the darkness of your soul.

May the moon softly restore you by light bathing you in the glow of restful sleep and peaceful dreams.

May the rain wash away your worries, and cleanse the hurt that sits in your heart.

May the breeze blow new strength into your being, and may you believe in the courage of yourself .

May you walk gently through the world, keeping your loved one with you always, knowing that you are never parted in the beating of your heart.

Non-religious funeral blessing

Be free, be strong, be proud of who you have been, know that you will be mourned and missed, that no one can replace you, that you have loved and are beloved.

Move beyond form, flowing like water, feeding on sunlight and moonlight, radiant as the stars in the night sky.

Pass the gates, enter the dark without fear, returning to the womb of life to steep in the cauldron of rebirth.

Rest, heal, grow young again.

Be blessed.

A prayer for a grieving friend

Dear Lord,

Today I ask you to help (friend’s name). I ask you to be with them while they struggle in the darkness of grief. May he/she recognise joy in the memories, hope in your love, and peace in the pain. May you walk beside him/her in his/her journey to recovery, filling the void and emptiness with your presence.

Amen

Christian prayer after the death of a loved one

Lord,

I feel like my entire life has lost its meaning. My heart is broken. In my time of doubt and pain, remind me of your sufficient grace. I need you, I need your strength to guide me. I pour out my grief to you in the hope that my suffering end, and your love will conquer.

Amen

Prayer for the loss of a child

Holy God,

Assure us that (child’s name) is safe in your eternal love. Help us understand our sorrow, and strengthen us with hope. We pray that we overcome this sadness, in the confidence that (child’s name) is in a better place with you.

May Jesus Christ welcome him/her into his arms and bless him/her abundantly.

Amen.

An Irish blessing

May the road rise to meet you.

May the wind be always at your back.

May the sunshine warm upon your face.

May the rains fall upon your fields.

And until we meet again,

May God hold you in the hollow of His hand.

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