Should a Funeral Be Held in a Church or a Funeral Home?

Should a Funeral Be Held in a Church or a Funeral Home?

Following a death, there are two distinct events: viewings and funerals. The body is on display prior to burial, and guests are free to pay their respects. Visitors can meet the deceased’s family one hour before the service.

Nowadays, more and more visitations begin an hour before the funeral service rather than the traditional two hours. In some cultures, conducting it the day before the burial is customary. A brief liturgy may be attended by the immediate relatives during the viewing’s final hour.

The sections below show more details regarding church and funeral home services.

Is a Church Service a Must?

It is not required to hold a funeral service in a church. You need to be aware of the religion that your loved one practiced. If not, think about whether they would want it. 

The chapel inside a funeral home is frequently used for funeral services. In cases where the deceased has chosen cremation, the family may elect not to hold a traditional service.

The family may select a memorial service or a celebration of life instead. The reception at the funeral home will be much more intimate and unforgettable because not every location or institution will accept the presence of a coffin. 

If you choose not to have a church funeral, you will need to choose a location for the service. Again, it’s crucial to consider the desires of the departed.

Who Is Qualified to Conduct a Funeral?

Anyone can officiate at a funeral. When selecting a funeral officiant for a loved one or making funeral arrangements in advance, several options are available. 

Depending on factors including personal taste, religion, and other factors, a funeral ceremony may be conducted by a particular person. These are typically the people who are capable of conducting a funeral ceremony.

Religious Leaders

Most funeral services are presided over by a member of the family’s congregation or local church. If you don’t know anyone in the region, the funeral home might be able to suggest someone from your faith. 

A religious leader can aid those in need of comfort while thinking about the loss of a loved one during a particularly trying time.

Friends and Family

It makes logical sense that a close relative would be able to provide an enlightening and sympathetic eulogy because they are likely to have the most knowledge about the deceased, from their early years up to their adult years.

One of the deceased’s close friends will be able to help the family comprehend how much their relative was loved outside of the family because they will have a viewpoint that even some family members lack.

Religiously Unaffiliated Ordained Ministers

It’s possible that the deceased wasn’t religious or that the family has decided against having a religious funeral service. The eulogy can be given by someone who is not religious, keeping the focus on the person’s life and the impact they had on others.

Funeral Directors

Funeral directors are legally permitted to carry out a minister’s duties, including arranging the funeral. Although they are not compelled to, funeral directors have the option to officiate a funeral ceremony. 

If you think your funeral director could be interested in conducting the services, ask them.

What Does a Funeral Minister Do?

The role of a funeral pastor resembles that of a funeral director. A pastor does assist family members in writing and delivering a eulogy for a loved one. 

The family may decide to have a religious clergy officiate the wedding depending on their level of religiosity. Although a license is not required to conduct a funeral, being a funeral minister will likely require you to be legally ordained


Ultimately, it is important to remember that a church and a funeral home are suitable for holding a funeral. 

The decision of whether to hold a funeral in a church or a funeral home is a personal one and should be based on the wishes of the deceased, the family of the deceased, and the overall costs associated with each option. 

Evergreen JAX is among the trusted funeral homes in Jacksonville. By combining a cemetery, funeral home, and crematory, we can offer families savings along with the convenience of making all their arrangements in one location. Contact us today to learn more.

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