Saying the Final Farewell.
When writing the script for a Funeral the most difficult part is often the Final Farewell (also known as the Committal). As a Celebrant I know that this is the most difficult part of the service for everyone present, and therefore it is really important to use the right wording.
At the families request I will add things to the coffin at this point. I have spoken about this at length in another blog. I find that this often lightens a difficult moment, especially when it is something very relevant.
If there is a photo on the coffin then I can lie it down at this point. This is a meaningful way of conveying the Final Farewell.
There are lots of options available to my families. They don't have to have a Final Farewell at all, some choose not too, but it can seem strange not to include some way of acknowledging their loved one has gone.
Some crematoriums have curtains that close, and others have the facility to lower the coffin. More and more these days my families choose for the coffin to remain on view. I still say those final words, but they don't have to cope with the coffin disappearing, which many people find very distressing.
When writing the script I always make sure the wording is unique, and this applies equally to the final farewell. Whilst we were given examples that we could use when we completed our training I very rarely use them, and if I go to them for inspiration, then I always adapt them so that they are relevant to the person we are saying goodbye too.
I always say some closing words after the Final Farewell. This gives the family time to gather themselves, and I always endeavour to end with something uplifting so that everyone leaves with a smile. After all, we have been holding a celebration of life, and celebrations should be happy events.