This commercial just disturbed my peace. I'm doing a funeral in the morning in which the widow requested that the service be "short." I heard the same thing in the wedding that I did early this year. Why don't we care about ritual? Why don't we celebrate these moments as the grace-filled moments they are? Why don't we allow God the space and time to bless them?

Oooooooh. It frustrates me.


Songbird said...

I think we fear the emotional intensity and don't stay put long enough for God's cathartic graciousness to take hold.

more cows than people said...

I hear you. i actually was just thinking this week about why it is that i put so much energy, with my husband, into crafting the liturgy for our wedding ceremony, why i allowed it to be a nearly 2 hour occasion (only one person- that i know of- complained about that), but why I most frequently use the prescribed form from the worship book of my denomination, switching out a few elements where the couple seems open to that? This is largely because folks tell me, bottom line, they want it as short as possible. One couple insisted they wanted their ceremony to be 10 minutes max. I said, "Are you sure about that? Hopefully this is the ONLY time that you are ever going to do this. 10 minutes will be gone in the blink of an eye. Are you positive that is what you want for your wedding ceremony?" "Absolutely," they said, I could see visions of the grand party to follow floating across their eyes. So I did it. And what did they say afterwards "That was REALLY short." "That was exactly what you asked for."

I had one wedding that was different, we put a lot of care into crafting the liturgy. It was such a delight.

And funerals aren't often as bad here. Usually folks want at least 30-40 minutes. One can prepare a meaningful service in that window. The last funeral I had was about an hour and fifteen minutes. I spent quite a bit of time shaping the service with the son of the deceased, taking all the elements his mom had stashed away in a file of funeral bulletins starring things, crossing things out, and trying to build a service that would honor her. He was worried about time, a bit, but mostly because he didn't want to make my husband and me work very hard, but I assured him, "This is the only time we're going to celebrate your mother's life in the presence of God in this way. Let's let it take the time it needs." And no one complained.

Phew. Sorry, long comment.