Funerals Hijacked: The Call for Secular Eulogies

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I went to a funeral tonight. For a person who the reverend never met. The reverend used the opportunity of having our undivided attention to try and convert us.

I’m definitely not a convert. I’m frightened of how many people in this world may share his views. He spent quite a lot of time explaining that good deeds don’t get you into heaven, only belief in Jesus does. So… when he has a moral quandary, what does he do? Does he simply act in his own best interest, without considering the well-being of others? Why would he have to? He believes good deeds are irrelevant; only faith matters.

I do think it’s disrespectful to take over a person’s funeral for your own agenda. And it’s not the first time this has happened. At another funeral, I know the guy who died couldn’t stand religion and all its divisiveness. He would have hated his funeral being hijacked.

I think there’s a missing service or opportunity here. We need non-religious people to give eulogies. Wouldn’t be a great job for me – making speeches is not my forte. But it’d be really nice to have secular services that celebrate and honor the lives of the deceased without any religious overtones.

Surely there are people who could step up and provide a fitting, inclusive tribute that focuses on the individual’s life. It’s time we respect the memory and beliefs of those who have passed by offering secular eulogies that truly honor their lives, without turning their final farewell into a platform for religious proselytizing.

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