Church Funerals

Church Funerals

Music at church funerals

Church funerals celebrate a life in many ways, including readings, a eulogy and tributes, and of course, music.

A typical church funeral service includes several opportunities for personal choices of music that have special meaning for the family.

There are a few ‘rules’ on the types of music you can choose for a religious services, whether C of E, Catholic or other denomination. Do discuss your music wishlist with your family, your minister, and with us to ensure everyone is happy with the final choices.

Music in a church funeral service

​Most church (religious) funerals share a similar format as follows:

Over 250 religious funerals

Planning something a little different?

Call us on 01252 511762 to discuss your church funeral music ideas.

We’ve sung over 250 funerals in all sizes of churches, chapels and cathedrals, so we have lots of experience and advice to share!

Church funeral music timings

Church of England funeral services

In general, church funeral services last between 45 and 60 minutes. This allows plenty of time for readings, eulogies, hymns, solos and favourite music. Regardless of the length, our funeral singers will be present for the whole service, and will also arrive 30 minutes early to make sure we’ve met the minister and the organist beforehand.

Roman Catholic Funeral Mass

Full Roman Catholic requiem masses often last longer than one hour, depending on how many present take communion, etc. However, any Catholic funeral service can be shorter often by not having a full mass, if the family need to move on to a cremation or burial at a set time. See our articles on Catholic funerals for more details on timings and opportunities for music.

Hymns for funerals

First of all, you don’t need a choir to lead hymn singing! A clear, strong voice is just as effective, and actually less daunting for people to join in with too. As professional opera singers, we are plenty loud enough to be heard over the organ without the need for microphones, but rest assured, never too loud! It’s always a good idea to have someone leading the hymns, as many attending might not feel like singing.

Organists at church funerals

There is nothing quite like the comforting feeling of a church organist accompanying the hymns at a funeral service. However, many families request us to sing solos that just don’t work with organ accompaniment. So, we bring our own discreet Bose speaker and recorded accompaniments for all solos and songs.

This also doesn’t put pressure on the many part-time or volunteer church organists to play music they are not familiar with, and won’t have time to rehearse with us before the service.

And, of course, if an organist isn’t available or practical, we can bring hymn backing tracks on our Bose system that everyone can hear and sing along with.

Thank you, your leading the hymns was wonderful. You had just the right touch, and helped us all raise our voices when needed. Your solos were magical and without effort you sang the exit music when there was a problem with the recorded version. A true professional with a wonderful gift.

MA, mother’s funeral, Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, Portswood, Hampshire

Thank you so much – that was wonderful. The perfect send off for my father. The Elgar was amazing and he would have so loved your voice. You made the service so special. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

GL, father’s funeral, ‘Ave Maria’ Polish Church, Milford, Hampshire

A huge thank you. You were absolutely brilliant. With your wonderful singing we certainly didn’t need a choir. Everyone said how fantastic you made the celebration of mum’s life. Such a wonderful idea. I will be singing your praises far and wide. Thank you once again.

MM, mother’s funeral, Wokingham Baptist Church, Berkshire

I wanted to thank you for singing beautifully at my father’s thanksgiving service and for your help with the order of service. It was very reassuring to be able to refer to you about the correct wording for Dulce Domum, and we all felt that on Friday that you lifted the church service up to another, lovelier level.

CAD, father’s funeral, St Mary the Virgin Church, Micheldever, Hampshire

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