Funeral Music

Funerals are occasions to sing the great music of the church that witness to the Lord of life. The pastor will help you determine if a song is appropriate for a funeral, but a guiding question to ask is, "Does this music give glory to God and witness to our hope in Jesus Christ?"

Congregational Hymns

Hymns that the congregation sings are strongly encouraged. Singing involves the congregation and allows everyone to give expression to the faith we hold. It is usually wise to select hymns that are both singable and more commonly known. Typically, three hymns are sufficient. Listed below are hymns that you might consider. All are from Evangelical Lutheran Worship, the worship book at Spirit Lutheran.

"Abide with Me" # 629

"Amazing Grace, How Sweet the Sound" # 779

"A Mighty Fortress Is Our God" # 504

"Beautiful Savior" # 838

'Behold the Host Arrayed in White" # 425

"Beneath the Cross of Jesus" # 338

"Blessed Assurance" # 638

"Blest Be the Tie That Binds" # 656

"Children of the Heavenly Father" # 781

"For All the Saints" # 422

"For All Your Saints, O Lord" # 427

"Great Is Thy Faithfulness" # 733

"Guide Me Ever, Great Redeemer" # 618

"How Firm a Foundation" # 796

"How Great Thou Art" # 856

"I Know That My Redeemer Lives!" # 619

"I Love to Tell the Story" # 661

"In the Cross of Christ I Glory" # 324

"It Is Well with My Soul" # 785

"Jerusalem, My Happy Home" # 628

"Jesus Christ Is Risen Today" # 365

"Jesus, Keep Me Near the Cross" # 335

"Jesus Loves Me!" # 595

"Just As I Am, without One Plea" # 592

"Lift High the Cross" # 660

"Love Divine, All Loves Excelling" # 631

"My Faith Looks Up to Thee" # 759

"My God, How Wonderful Thou Art" # 863

"My Hope Is Built on Nothing Less" # 597

"My Life Flows on in Endless Song" # 763

"Now All the Vault of Heaven Resounds" # 367

"Now the Green Blade Rises" # 379

"O Christ, Our Hope" # 604

"O Day Full of Grace" # 627

"O God, Our Help in Ages Past" # 632

"Oh, Happy Day When We Shall Stand" # 441

"O Jesus, I Have Promised" # 810

"Rock of Ages, Cleft for Me" # 623

"Savior, like a Shepherd Lead Us" # 789

"Shall We Gather At the River" # 423

"Soon and Very Soon" # 39

"The King of Love My Shepherd Is" # 502

"The Lord’s My Shepherd" # 778

"Thine Is the Glory" # 376

"What a Friend We Have in Jesus" # 742

Other Music

Soloists or instrumentalists are frequently part of praising God at funerals or memorial services. The church usually arranges for these skilled musicians. While it is acceptable to have a friend or relative provide such music, they should have the music abilities necessary and the emotional strength to sing or play at a time when they may be grieving. Music in addition to congregational hymns is optional and family members should not feel obligated to arrange for it.

Again, only music that reflects our trust in Christ is appropriate at a funeral. One or two anthems are usually done. Below are possible anthems to assist you in communicating preferences to your family. Many congregational hymns can also be done as anthems; if a number is listed after the title, it can be found in Evangelical Lutheran Worship.

"Behold the Host Arrayed in White" # 425

"Borning Cry" # 732

"Drawn to the Light" # 593

"Eternal Spirit of the Living Christ" # 402

"God Be with You Till We Meet Again"

"Give Me Jesus" # 770

"He Leadeth Me: Oh, Blessed Thought"

"If with All Your Hearts (Elijah)" – Mendelssohn

"I Lift My Eyes to the Hills" – Keesecker

"Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring" – Bach

"Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring" – Bach (Instru.)

"Just a Closer Walk with Thee" # 697

"Lamb of God" # 336

"Nunc Dimitis" Pg. 113

"On Eagle’s Wings" # 787

"O Rest in the Lord (Elijah)" - Mendelssohn

"Precious Lord, Take My Hand" # 773

"Sheep May Safely Graze" – Bach (Instru.)

"Shepherd Me, O God" # 780

"Softly and Tenderly Jesus Is Calling" # 608

"The Old Rugged Cross"

Thine Is the Glory" # 376

"Thy Holy Wings" # 613

"You Are Mine" # 581

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