God's love and power extends over all creation.  Every life, including our own, is precious to God.  Christians have always believed that there is hope in death as in life, and that there is new life in Christ after death.

The death of a loved one affects everyone regardless of faith.  Even those who share the Christian faith find that there is a real sense of loss at the death of a loved one.  We will each have had our own experiences of their life and death, with different memories and different feelings of love, grief and respect.  To acknowledge this the funeral service helps us to express our feelings (and our faith if appropriate) as we say farewell.  It is where we can acknowledge our loss and our sorrow and reflect on our own lives in a safe and sacred space.  All those who mourn need support and comfort and we are here to help with this journey throughout.

There are many ways of organising a funeral - at a church or at a crematorium or natural burial sites.  Here in the Benefice of Frensham we can offer funeral services at both churches, and we can conduct burials (with or without a service) or interment of ashes at the Church of St Mary the Virgin. Should you wish a church service and then cremation this is also possible. The Vicar can also conduct funeral services at the local crematoria for those in the Benefice.  Ashes can then be interred at a later date.

In order to be buried in the graveyard the deceased has to be a parishioner living in the Benefice of Frensham or a person whose name is entered on the church electoral roll whether living in the parish or not (the same applies to ashes except where they are interred with a relative already buried in the church graveyard). In certain circumstances if a regular attender of the church is not on the church electoral role, at the Vicar's discretion, they may have a service with burial or the interment of cremated remains.   

f you are wishing to bury your deceased loved one or their ashes in St Mary's Church graveyard, it is important that you know that the plot is 'graced' to your loved one for perpetuity.  This is not the same as in a municipal cemetery where you buy the lease to the plot and the next of kin owns the rights.  In the Benefice of Frensham there is specific graveyard information and regulation.   

For information and help organising a funeral at Frensham, please complete the funeral request form and send to the Reverend Jane Walker

If you are organising a funeral or a memorial service you may find it helpful to look at the information on the Church of England website

In the Church of England, Churchyard Regulations apply and there are certain stipulations that must be adhered to which are governed by Church Canon law.  Therefore, any monument or additions to the graveyard need permission from the Vicar before they are put in place.

Other useful websites include Help to Understand Funeral Costs and a Guide to Choosing a Headstone

Should you wish to hire St Mary's church hall for refreshments after the service please contact Barbara Potter on 01252 794727.

Music for funerals

A list of hymns that you might consider having at a Funeral or Memorial Service is shown below. The numbers refer to Hymns Ancient and Modern New Standard, which we use in St Mary’s.

Abide with me    13
All my hope on God is founded    336
Be still, my soul, the Lord is on your side
Dear Lord and Father of mankind    115
Eternal father, strong to save    292
Faithful vigil ended    453
For all the Saints who from their labours rest    305
Glorious things of thee are spoken    172
God be in my head    236
God is love, let heaven adore him     365
Guide me, O thou great redeemer    214
I heard the voice of Jesus say     247
I know that my redeemer lives     251
I to the hills will lift mine eyes    126
I vow to thee, my country, all earthly things above     295
Immortal, invisible, God only wise     199
In heavenly love abiding    555
Jerusalem the golden    184
Jesu Son of Mary     281
Jesus lives! Thy terrors now     82
Lead, kindly light     215
Lead us, heavenly Father, lead us      224
Lord of all hopefulness     394
Love divine, all loves excelling     131
Loving shepherd of thy sheep      134
Now is eternal life      402
Now thank we all our God     205
O God, our help in ages past     99
O love that wilt not let me go     541
O strength and stay     7
Praise the Lord! ye heavens, adore him     195
Praise, my soul, the King of heaven     192
Praise to the holiest in the height     117
Praise to the Lord, the almighty, the King of creation     207
Rock of ages, cleft for me     135
The day thou gavest, Lord, is ended     16
The King of love my shepherd is     126
The Lord's my shepherd, I'll not want     426
There's a wideness in God's mercy     573
Thine for ever! God of love     234
Through all the changing scenes of life     209
Through the night of doubt and sorrow     211
Thy hand, O God, has guided     171
Who would true valour see     212
Ye that know the Lord is gracious     175