Catholic Funeral - Rosary and Viewing

by Gram 14 Replies latest jw friends

  • bemused
    Whoa, hold on a moment. I've never been to a JW funeral (but have been to plenty of others). Are you saying that the deceased is not discussed at a JW funeral? People don't relive their memories of that person? WTH is said then?
  • sir82

    Are you saying that the deceased is not discussed at a JW funeral? People don't relive their memories of that person? WTH is said then?

    A typical JW funeral will consist of a talk by an elder, given in a Kingdom Hall. The casket is not there at all. It is maybe 2-3 minutes of anecdotes about the deceased, followed by 30 minutes of JW infomercial, thinly disguised as "this is what the deceased believed".

    The concluding words are usually along the lines of "now is the time to make sure you are doing what the Watchtower tells you to do, or you will die without hope of a resurrection", directed at JWs in the audience who are inactive or "spiritually weak".

    There are occasional exceptions to this, where the affair is somewhat warmer, but this is the format for 90+% of JW funerals.

  • OrphanCrow
    garybuss: I've attended Catholic weddings and many Catholic funerals including a couple that were High Masses at the Cathedral in Sioux Falls. As far as religious services, Catholic is my favorite. I'm extremely appreciative of my Catholic friends.

    Me too. I must have some Catholic running in my blood somewhere. There is Orthodox for sure. The heavy rituals and chanting get me.

    I have spent over 40 years being a religious tourist, in a way. I have attended services of everything from Ukranian Orhtodox to Native healing ceremonies.

    The Ukranian Orthodox wedding I went to was over 2 hours long - they put my JWs sister's hour long service to shame. I was entranced - the bride and groom actually donned heavy crowns at one point and all the chanting and ritual was quite the performance - heavily scripted. I hardly understood a word of what was said and I almost passed out from the heat and the getting up and down kneeling for the prayers. The food and drink that followed was memorable.

    A Ukranian Orthodox funeral from where I come from is an event that requires incredible stamina from all who are involved. I worked as a floral designer for several years and did the flowers for several.

    The most outstanding experience came when an elderly Ukranian woman died. The entire family took over the funeral home for 10 days leading up to the funeral. The casket was open the entire time and they had a 24 hour watch - sometimes there was as many as 20 people in attendance, complete with babies crawling on the floor and order in pizza boxes scattered around the chapel.

    It was the largest casket spray I have ever made, out of entirely red roses. The funeral director said that the church service was pure insantity - the service went on forever and ever, the family video taped the whole thing, there were candelabras with lit candles on each side of an open casket and when everybody filed past, weeping and kissing the grandmama, the lit candles would almost fall into the casket - the funeral directors had to grab the candelabras many times. It was a spectacle beyond spectacles.

    And then...the old lady's son died the next week. And it all happened again. except half the time and half the participants. I guess they were all tired out. Including the funeral directors. They had just had time to get the carpets all cleaned in the funeral home and it was a relief that the second time around wasn't so bad. The funeral home tightened up their rules on family viewing after that.

  • Dagney

    I'm drawn to the ritual and tradition also, something I ridiculed all my life. **sigh** But the real me seems to like it.

    Another exJW and I attended the Catholic service of another exJW a few years ago. I think it was the first for both of us. We boo hoo'd through the whole thing for some reason. Probably a culmination of a lot of things just came pouring out.

    Since then I've been to another of a distant relative. I'm just an onlooker, but for some reason, I really like peace of the ritual and tradition.

    Very interesting experience OrphanCrow.

  • Xanthippe

    I went to an Anglican high church funeral and nearly jumped out of my skin when the vicar entered the church behind us saying at the top of his voice ' I am the resurrection and the life'. I believe there was incense too and the vicar wore flowing green robes.

    It was a strange turn of events because the deceased, our friend, was an atheist and scientist by training who had befriended the vicar in a local pub and they had become drinking buddies. So the vicar, quite grief stricken at his friend's sudden death had offered to do his funeral. Some of the stories our friend's old college buddy told when he got up to speak were x - rated and it was amusing to hear our friend's sense of humour in that 'holy' or holier than thou place.

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