I had the opportunity to attend a Requiem Mass yesterday.  It was at a high-church Anglican parish.  It was a service for an Anglican priest whom I had known.  It was the first time I had attended a requiem.  Quite literally it involved bells and smells.  When the priest and the censor circled the altar I imagined the Benny Hill theme song in my head.  It was my first time in a service with incense.  Is this what it’s going to be like in heaven?

All Christians in the congregation who were in good communicant standing with their church were invited to participate.   I decided against going forward.  It is not my practice, at least at funerals.  I felt it was an invitation for the local faithful to eat and drink with a beloved friend one last time.  It was their moment, not mine.

Whenever I attend a funeral I reconsider how I would like  the arrangements to celebrate my departure from the planet.  Not high-church for me I think, and I should avoid the weepy funeral hymns.  Something lively and upbeat.  What a Wonderful World is still on my list, and Rainbow People by Colin Gibson.  Suggestions welcome!

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