Lord God, here we are gathered, 
although we really would rather not be 
here. We would almost rather be anywhere
else. We might even prefer to. 
be at the dentist for the pulling of a tooth. 
It is difficult to be here because it 
means, in a way, that death is real now for us. 
But here we are, Lord. Our friend and loved 
one has died. Here we are, Lord, to weep 
and mourn. May your Spirit be with us as 
we remember and celebrate. Lord, may we 
be nourished and strengthened by your rich and full 
love and grace. 

Eternal God, we also pray at this time that we 
would be able to see beyond this earthly life 
to the joys and wonders of life eternal. Help us to firmly 
know of the promises of life eternal. Speak to us 
in our needs at this moment and empower us to 
look forward always with confidence; in the name 
of our risen Jesus. Amen.