Over the years I’ve been to many funerals. Young people, old people, people my own age, murdered people and people who died from drug overdoses or the ravages of alcoholism. Once, in our local chapel, during the funeral service for an old lady, one of her relatives, a middle-aged man, collapsed and died during the proceedings. A few days later we were all at his funeral.
One of the hardest funerals I ever attended was that of my own father three years ago. That was harsh but it was very beautiful too.
Today I had the privilege of attending the funeral of one of my father’s oldest friends. He and my father had married sisters and they’d all been going about together since they were in their twenties.
It was a very sad day for my aunt and my cousins. But for the rest of the huge congregation the service was an inspiration. There is something very fine about celebrating the life of a man, or woman, who has lived well into their eighties and lived in an exemplary fashion, loved and respected by their family, their friends and all who knew them.