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Inspirational Music and Poetry for a Funeral Service or Ceremony...

Music is like elixir to the ears and poetry is food for the soul...

Choosing the right music and poetry or readings for a service or ceremony is crucial.  While acknowledging and using your styles and favourites is always important, it is worth bearing the guests in mind too.  You may want to consider if the lyrics are right.  Ask yourself does the choice conjure the right atmosphere for the service?  Is the length right for the moment it is for? 

All of these are considerations when trying to choose something that will enhance an occasion and not create a lasting effect of the wrong kind!

Over the years that I have been a celebrant, I have helped to guide many families and couples to enhance their service giving them honest and informative advice.  One of the benefits of using me as your celebrant is that you know you will get an original non-scripted service.  A bespoke ceremony to make all of your wishes come to fruition.  In the consultation meeting, I will always ask if there is a particular poem, reading or passage you would like included along with your music choices.  Sometimes it is difficult to choose so I thought I would signpost people to this page where I have compiled some popular suggestions. 

I also write poetry and inspirational passages myself and you can find a selection of those examples on that page.  It is always a privilege to conduct a service and I am more than happy to write a bespoke piece just for you when that time comes.  Please like it and share it by all means...just remember to accredit the work to me as the author!


The inclusion of a hymn for some is a traditional nod to the past.  Some families have particular hymns they choose to sing at weddings and funerals as a mark of respect whilst others may not be religious but just enjoy singing a hymn as a fitting tribute to a sporting event or artist.  Hymns can be traditional or modern and can be happy, sad, uplifting or sombre.  For a funeral, there is no right or wrong.  Often at a time when it can be difficult to find the right words, hymns can provide a healthy release for the emotions we’re feeling. The act of singing can help create a sense of togetherness when many in attendance will need it.  Equally, the inclusion of a hymn at a funeral can lift the spirits and bring a greater sense of Joy!  Some families like to sing and others choose to listen...that choice is yours but here are some popular choices you may wish to consider...

It is always worth considering the lyrics and what they mean to ensure the correct message is inferred.  For example,  Abide With Me is a hymn that confronts death and the emptiness we feel after loss head-on.  It offers the bereaved solace in their time of need. In its simplest form, the hymn is a prayer to God, as the speaker pleads with God to stay by his side during their darkest hour. Another popular choice of funeral hymn is I Watch The Sunrise, which follows the progress of the sun throughout the day. The sun’s journey mirrors that of someone’s life and causes people to pause for a moment and reflect.

Popular choices

Abide With Me

Lord Of All Hopefulness

All Things Bright And Beautiful

Morning Has Broken

I Vow To Thee My Country


The Old Rugged Cross

Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer

Love Divine All Love's Excelling

Amazing Grace

Give Me Joy In My Heart

Praise My Soul The King Of Heaven...

I Watch The Sunrise

And so many more besides...

Music recorded by professional artists is often chosen to reflect the preference of whom the service is for.  If they have or had a particular favourite track or style this will set the tone of the ceremony.   At a funeral, the local chapels and crematoria can provide these tracks via Obitus who have access to a vast database of artists and traditional hymns.  Your Funeral Director will order these directly for you as they are subject to copyright and Obitus complies with all of that.  

Somewhere Over The Rainbow - Eva Cassidy

Time To Say Goodbye - Sarah Brightman and Andrea Bocelli 

My Way - Frank Sinatra 

Nimrod - Elgar

We'll Meet Again - Dame Vera Lynn 

Unforgettable - Nat King Cole 

You Raise Me Up - Westlife 

Because You Loved Me - Celine Dion

Jealous Of The Angels - Donna Taggart 

Moonlight Serenade - Glen Miller 

Dancing With The Angels - Dani & Lizzy 

I'll See You Again - Westlife 

Dancing Queen - Abba

Bring Me Sunshine - Morecombe & Wise

The Wonder Of You - Elvis Presley

Take Me Home Country Roads - John Denver

Green, Green Grass - George Ezra

Que Sera Sera - Doris Day

Rockin' All Over The World - Status Quo

Walk of Life - Dire Straits

The list is endless...

Popular Poetry 

Do Not Stand At My Grave and Weep - Elizabeth Mary Frye

My Mother's Garden / Father's Garden (anon)

God's Garden

All Is Well - Henry Scott Holland

He/She Is Gone - David Harkins

Crossing The Bar - Alfred Lord Tennyson

Let Me Go - Christina Rossetti

Funeral Blues - W H Auden

I'm There Inside Your Heart - Anon

Miss Me But Let Me Go - Anon

If I Should Go Tomorrow - Christina Rosetti

More to follow...

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