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You need not have hymns for a funeral

Re: Gail Walker's column on suitable music for a funeral (Oct 16).

As a Humanist celebrant, I plan funeral ceremonies for those who wish to have a non-religious celebration of life. Usually there are three pieces of music at such a ceremony - all carefully chosen by the next of kin to reflect the character of the deceased.

The entrance music may send out a subliminal message, a reflective piece will be poignant and dignified, while the exit music may make a bold statement about the true essence of the person who has ceased to be.

While I agree with Gail that the melodies of classical hymns can provide an evocative backing track to a funeral service, the lyrics render them inappropriate for atheists and agnostics.

But there is an almost limitless quantity of classical and other musical genres from which to choose. Anyone seeking further information should check out the N.I. Humanist website and go to the link for ceremonies, www.humanistni.org

Jennifer Sturgeon

Humanist Celebrant

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