Good Funeral Music: “Morning Has Broken”

As a director in arrangements conference, I often ask the question “Who in the family can sing?” You don’t have to hire a soloist (though this is certainly a nice idea). You don’t need to cue recorded music from your brother-in-law’s iPhone into the funeral home’s sound system. Members of your family can improve the funeral by singing as simply and as well as they can. In fact, an amateur’s tentative, imperfect voice is often more powerful at the funeral than any professional’s.

Have a listen to this version of “Morning Has Broken” (an old English hymn popularized by Cat Stevens) that I found on YouTube.com. Your family’s version could convey, at the close of the funeral, that a new day is dawning, and that there is clearly, always hope.

Remember that young people want to contribute; they mourn too. Help them find their feelings by including them in the funeral planning and singing, thereby giving them their voice. (Good job, Becky Osmond.)

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