Archive for May, 2023

Interfaith Prayer

In anticipation of the forthcoming website – Prayers for Everyone – which is currently under development, I am writing prayers where there seem to be gaps… like interfaith prayers that don’t address any deity, but just celebrate joy in the ideas and ideals of the interfaith movement.

Interfaith Prayer

When people of different faith
Get together in peace
True peace
Unity and kindness…
Something occurs
Something good

An invisible force
A commonality
Carried on a wave of diversity
Honouring our different beliefs

It’s as if the invisible energies
Of miscellaneous angels
Move between those faiths
Reminding us
Of the similarities
Between us all

Explaining the power of love
The perfection of agreement
The exquisite nature 
Of harmonious understanding

And so together
We celebrate
Sacred peace
Sacred love
Harmony in diversity
And give thanks

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Prayer for the Birds

Bring back the birds
73 million gone from this land in 50 years
73 million songs, 73 million lives
Gone from gardens, fields, woods and seas
Bring back the birds

Robins, chaffinches, starlings, thrushes, blue tits
Annihilation by pesticides, farming, cats,
Logging, climate-change
Humans and their kind
Greed, blind greed

Precision, harmony and music 
Flying like angels
Swimming like mermaids
Carried on waves of wind and water
Navigating by starlight

Where is the morning chorus?
Where is the murmuration?
Where is the song of the lark?
Where the swifts that fly to China?
The swallows to Africa?
They must return

Celestial acrobats
Soaring through air and water
Curving over clouds
What does it mean
‘Free as a bird’?
We caged them
Killed them
How did this happen?

Bring back the birds
73 million gone from this land in 50 years
73 million songs, 73 million lives
Gone from gardens, fields, woods and seas
Bring back the birds

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Loving Funerals

A loving funeral is essential. But isn’t easy to set up a loving funeral. Most of us no longer have a local priest or person to turn to. The vicar or celebrant recommended by a Funeral Director rarely fulfils the task, and to try and carry out the funeral oneself can also be nearly impossible for a thousand reasons, not least the sheer pressure of living with one’s own loss, which can be draining both emotionally and physically.

Many religious people want a funeral done in the usual way, but for some of us this is not what we want. Religion is man-made; spiritual awareness is cosmic. Choice is part of our lives, and this applies to our spiritual lives. Many of us are spiritually aware but not attached to any particular faith, and some celebrants are not prepared to support our need for freedom.  There is a beautiful specialness in people, whether they have no interest in anything or have a passion for embroidery, making doll’s houses out of match-boxes, sport, animals, grandchildren, gardening or mountain climbing. Everyone is unique and it is so important that their unique character is honoured at their funeral.

Funerals today are best when they are loving, insightful, and if possible friendly… and they can be friendly whether there are three people present or 300. They don’t need to be sentimental but they do need to be authentic. A funeral must serve two purposes – to make those present feel connected with the person that has died, and to empower people that come to the funeral to feel better for the experience, and appreciate a moment of connection at the deepest level.

I know when I have carried out a funeral successfully. It’s when somebody comes up to me and says “did you know him? I was under the impression you knew him really well…” also when somebody says “She would have really loved this service… it’s as if she was here.” 

Over the years I have written many funeral readings for some very special people. The specialness of each person and each funeral helps to create funerals for other unique women, men and children. But with every funeral there is always something different, beautiful, radiant and unexpected. The readings I have created for these unique people can be found on my website – funeral readings.

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