Accompany Them with Singing: The Christian Funeral

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Westminster John Knox Press, 2009 - Religion - 224 pages
2 Reviews

Thomas Long begins this fascinating volume by describing how the Christian funeral developed historically, theologically, and liturgically, and then discusses recent cultural trends in funeral practices, including the rise in both cremations and memorial services. He describes the basic pattern for a funeral service, details options in funeral planning, identifies characteristics of a "good funeral," and provides thoughtful guidance for preaching at a funeral.

Long also notes a disturbing trend toward funeral services that seem theologically right and pastorally caring, but actually depart from the primary aims of the Christian funeral. He argues that a new, less-theological and less-satisfying service that focuses on the mourner has begun to erode the Christian view. He contrasts the ancient grand community drama with today's trend toward body-less memorial services that focus primarily on the living and grief management. This is a loss for the church, he argues, and he calls for the church to reclaim the classic metaphor.


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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - nwbubba - LibraryThing

A prominent preacher and theologian, Thomas Long is a professor at Emory University. This book is the fruit of more than two decades researching the history and theology of funerals, and as Long puts ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - mrbirb - LibraryThing

Thought provoking book on the meaning of the funeral service that challenges the 21st century mind set that perhaps places too much emphasis on those left behind and not enough on honoring the ... Read full review

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About the author (2009)

Thomas G. Long is the Bandy Professor of Preaching at Candler School of Theology, Emory University, in Atlanta, Georgia. He is one of the most popular preachers in the United States today. He is the author of several books, including The Senses of Preaching (WJK), Preaching and the Literary Forms of the Bible, and Whispering the Lyrics: Sermons for Lent and Easter.

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