“The liturgy for the dead is an Easter liturgy. It finds all its meaning in the resurrection.”
The Book of Common Prayer, page 507.
The death of anyone associated with St. Luke’s should be reported to the church as soon as possible. The date and other funeral arrangements should be made in consultation with the clergy and not announced until a priest has given approval. To reach our clergy outside of office hours, telephone our main number, 404-873-7600, and choose the option for reaching the priest on call.
As specified in the Book of Common Prayer, “Baptized Christians are properly buried from the church.” Funerals are generally held with the body, either in a coffin or as ashes, present and covered with a pall. If it is not possible for the body to be present, a Memorial Service may be held, using the same rites and language as the Burial Office. All funeral services follow the rites set forth in the Book of Common Prayer, but is is customary for St. Luke’s to provide a Order of Service with the entire liturgy to facilitate participation by everyone.
St. Luke’s has both a Columbarium, located in our Bell Tower, and a Memorial Garden for the interment of ashes. Families may receive friends in the Parish Hall or Hamilton Room prior to the funeral or host a reception afterward. We provide a room for the family to gather prior to the funeral. Our Funeral Guild ensures there is a guest register and people to direct first-time visitors to the appropriate places.
Holy Eucharist is customarily offered at funerals and encouraged for regular communicants. Scripture choices are specified by the Book of Common prayer. An organist from St. Luke’s is available to play hymns and provide other music chosen in consultation with the clergy. Music is meant to complement the liturgy and emphasize themes of resurrection, comfort, strength, and thanksgiving. It is also appropriate to discuss with the clergy the possibility of including hymns especially meaningful to the deceased.
The St. Luke’s Flower Guild provides altar flowers with a suggested donation of $125 to cover expenses. Other flowers ordered by family or friends are placed in the Parish Hall or Hamilton Room and should be taken home by the family.
To make a funeral an easy and positive experience for loved ones, we encourage parishioners to outline their funeral preferences ahead of time. To obtain a funeral plan form or for more information on funerals, please contact the church office at 404-873-7600.