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Office for the Burial of the Dead.
our mourning friends who are following the lifeless remains of their dear relative [or, as the case may be,] to the grave. Hear us, O Lord, for them, though unworthy to ask for ourselves; and so regard their sorrows, that they may find, in the bosom of their God, that comfort and peace which the world cannot give. Support them in their afflictions, and direct their hearts and their hopes to that Savior of their souls who has said, Blessed are they who mourn, for they shall be comforted. May their mourning be after a godly sort; may they know from blessed experience that the Lord loveth those whom he chasteneth, and be enabled to say, Thy will be done. Help them to see justice in thy dealings, wisdom in thy providence, and love in thy correction; and to be sensible that it is good for them that they have been afflicted. Endue them with patience under this distressing bereavement, and with pious resignation to thy blessed will; and help them to make such improvement from their sorrows, that what seemeth to them so great a loss, may, through thy blessing, tend to their eternal gain. While following the remains of their friend to the house appointed for all flesh, may the consolations of thy peace be with them; and, viewing the grave as the place where the Lord Jesus lay, may their hopes be raised to the high and holy place where he forever reigneth. These things, and whatever else thou seest fitting for us, for our mourning friends, and for all mankind, we humbly ask in the name and through the merits of him who is the resurrection and the life, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.
The following may be used when the last of the above is omitted; especially at the Funeral of a Child.
O Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who
Office for the Burial of the Dead.
art our only hope in time of need, we look unto thee in the name of Jesus Christ, confident that thou wilt hear the prayer of faith, and impart thy grace to those who need. We beseech thee to behold us in mercy; to forgive our sins, and to hear our prayers. Righteous art thou, O God, in all thy ways, and merciful and good in thy dealings with the children of men. Our sufferings are less than our sins deserve: it is of thy mercy, and because thy compassion faileth not, that we are not consumed. But thou knowest, Lord, our weakness, and how little it is that we can endure; that our faith fail not, and for the glory of thy name, turn from us, we beseech thee, the evils of life, or give us grace to bear them with due submission to thy holy will. Behold, and bless us on this occasion, when called to weep with those whom thy righteous providence has called to weep. Let thy Holy Spirit be with us, to sanctify our hearts, and inspire us with a just sense of thy character, and of our duty. Cause us to know our end, and the number of our days, how few they are, that we may duly reflect how short a time we have to live. Thou hast made our days but few, and our age is as nothing, compared with thee. In middle age, and in youth, and in childhood, is man cut down like a flower. May the shortness of the time allotted us make us more diligent in performing what our hands find to do; remembering that no work can be done in the grave whither we go. While we sympathize in the sorrows of our mourning friends, raise, we beseech thee, our thoughts and our hopes to those heavenly things which thou hast promised to the faithful in a better world; and while we see and feel that the wages of sin is death, may we rejoice and be thankful that the gift of God is eternal life, through Jesus Christ; who, by rising from the dead, hath become the first-fruits of those who sleep, that in him this
Office for the Burial of the Dead.
mortal shall put on immortality; that he will change these our perishing bodies, and make them like unto his own glorious body, and death shall be swallowed up in victory. Make us duly thankful that there is a place of refuge, a God hearing prayer, to whom the afflicted may fly for comfort and peace. In the confidence of this belief, and trusting in thy mercy, through the merits of our Savior, we commend to thy compassionate goodness the afflicted family from whom thou hast taken a beloved child. Behold them, O Lord, in mercy, and sanctify their sorrows. Make them sensible that thou art just and good, and give them grace to be resigned to thy holy will. May they say in their heart, It is the Lord; let him do what seemeth to him good. May they, on this distressing occasion, be still and know that thou art God, and that thou makest all things work together for good to those who love thee. May they think, with thankfulness, on the many blessings which they still possess; and chiefly may they rejoice, with consolation, in the day and means of grace. Help them, we beseech thee, O God, and help us all to make suitable improvement from this mournful event; to see the vanity of earthly hopes, and the uncertainty of terrestrial things. What, Lord, is our hope? Truly our hope is in thee. And having this hope, may we purify ourselves, even as thou art pure. May we live to thy glory in this world, and finally, by thy mercy, obtain everlasting life, through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honor and glory, world without end. Amen.
Instead of the above Prayers, which follow the Lesson, or any of them, may be selected such Collects from the Prayer Book as shall be thought more suitable.
The Sermon or Exhortation, if there be one at the time, may here follow.
The Service may be concluded with the following Prayer and Blessing:
O God, whose days are without end, and whose mercies cannot be numbered, make us, we beseech thee, deeply sensible of the shortness and uncertainty of human life, and let thy Holy Spirit lead us through this vale of misery in holiness and righteousness all the days of our lives; that when we shall have served thee in our generation, we may be gathered unto our fathers, having the testimony of a good conscience; in the communion of thy holy church; in the confidence of a certain faith; in the comfort of a reasonable, religious, and steadfast hope; in favor with thee our God, and in perfect charity with all the world. All which we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, be amongst you, and remain with you always. Amen.
When it is not convenient to carry the corpse into a church, the above Service may be used in a private dwelling-house, or other building.
In addition to the Form of Prayer and Thanksgiving to Almighty God for the Fruits of the Earth, &c. the following Prayer may be used, at the discretion of the minister.
ADORABLE and everliving God, who art the Author and Giver of all good things; who visitest the earth and blessest it, making it very plenteous; who sendest rain into the valleys, makest the grass to grow upon the mountains, and crownest the year with thy goodness, thou art the God of all the earth; all creatures wait upon thee that thou mayst give
them their meat in due season. We would praise thee, O Lord, for thy unbounded goodness, and declare the wonders which thou dost for the children of men. Our fathers hoped in thee; they trusted in thee, and thou didst deliver them. We thank thee, O God, for the good land which thou gavest to them and to us, their children, and for blessings unnumbered, both temporal and spiritual, which, through thy patient goodness, we still enjoy. Thou, O God, hast proved us; thou didst remember us in our low estate, and redeemedst us from our enemies. Thou givest peace in our borders, and blessest our labors with increase. We yield thee thanksgiving and praise for thy great and manifold blessings vouchsafed to the government and people of these United States; that we have the enjoyment of civil and religious liberty, and are protected by the administration of just and equal laws. Grant that a sense of thy goodness to us and to our country may engage our hearts and lives in thy service. Give wisdom, and strength, and union to our public councils. Bless the governor and other rulers of this state, and all who are in authority over us. Bless our churches, and all our religious institutions. May the gospel spread, and godliness more and more prevail; and may all who profess the faith of Christ walk worthy of their vocation. We pray that the blessings of that liberty wherewith Christ has made us free, may be extended and preserved among all people. Enlarge the borders of the Redeemer's kingdom, till all the ends of the earth shall rejoice in his salvation. Increase and multiply upon us thy mercy, that, thou being our Ruler and Guide, we may so pass through things temporal, that finally we lose not the things eternal. These things, and whatever else thou seest to be good for us and our country, and for all the people and nations of the earth, we ask, through the merits and