Prayers for burial

by Rev Kevin C O’dunn (Tampa, Florida)

Date ________

Time___:___(Time Zone)

Longitude and latitude

Heavenly Father, You created the oceans and the sky and have blessed us — who live upon Your earth, with the power to sail the sea and soar in your heavens. Those called to ships and flight, are rare among Your sons and daughters, their risks are many and their sacrifices of home and hearth are well known. But the blessings they receive are far beyond earthly comfort; for within their risks is the true witness of Your profound perfection, — No matter how high the winds, no matter how steep the seas, Your divine hand is present and the wisdom of Your guidance crafts our souls.

Today Dear Father we have ventured aboard the (Insert Name of Vessel) _______________ and now drift above the amazing and ordered wilderness of the (insert body of water) ________________ to return one of Your favored sons/daughters, (Name of deceased) __________, to you. (First Name) _______ was born of Mother just as Your Son Jesus was born of Mary. _________ lived a life of (Lifes work) ____________ and bore witness to Your most magnificent secrets and now Greg has chosen to rest with You in the fluid of Earths womb.

(The ashes are released)

Dear God, restore confidence and laughter to this family and these friends and let them celebrate the life they shared with (First name) __________. And let us all take comfort in the sacrifice, made for us by You, through Your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Service written by
Captain KC ODunn, ULC
Ordained Minister of Universal Life
Aboard the Research Vessel Suncoaster,
Florida Institute of Oceanography

Return to A Soldiers Prayer

Have the place of interment prepared already. Prepare the body of the deceased pet by wrapping it in cloth and placing it in an appropriately sized box. Prepare a place where the body can lie “in state” for a time, perhaps in the lounge room. Place a candle, and perhaps a photograph of the pet with the children near the box.

Begin the prayers in the room where the body is resting.

Psalm 104

The eyes of all look to you, O Lord,
and you give them their food in due season;
you open your hand,
and satisfy the desire of every living thing.
When you hide your face, they are dismayed;
when you take away their breath, they die and return to their dust.
When you send forth your spirit, they are created;
and you renew the face of the ground.
May the glory of the Lord endure forever;
may the Lord rejoice in his works.
I will sing to the Lord as long as I live;
I will sing praise to my God while I have being.
Bless the Lord, O my soul.
Praise the Lord!

Reading: Revelation 21

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “See, the home of God is among mortals. He will dwell with them as their God; they will be his peoples, and God himself will be with them; he will wipe every tear from their eyes. Death will be no more; mourning and crying and pain will be no more, for the first things have passed away.” And the one who was seated on the throne said, “See, I am making all things new.”

This is the word of the Lord:
Thanks be to God.

Prayer (By Rabbi Barry H. Block), especially suitable for burials where children are involved. Each family member may take it in turns to say one of these prayers.

O Lord our God, we come before you this day in sadness.  {Pet’s Name}, who brought us so much joy in life, has now died.   His/her happy times in our family’s embrace have come to an end.  We miss him/her already.

Help us, O God, to remember the good times with {Pet’s Name}.  Remind us to rejoice in the happy times he/she brought to our home.  Let us be thankful for the good life we were blessed to give to him/her.

We are grateful to you, God, for creating {Pet’s Name}, for entrusting him/her to our care, and for sustaining him/her in our love for a measure of time.   We understand that all that lives must die.   We knew that this day would come.  And yet, O God, we would have wanted one more day of play, one more evening of love with {Pet’s Name}.

O God, as we have taken care of {Pet’s Name} in life, we ask that you watch over him/her in death. You entrusted {Pet’s Name} to our care; now, we give him/her back to you.  May {Pet’s Name} find a happy new home in your loving embrace.

As we remember {Pet’s Name}, may we love each other more dearly.   May we care for all your creatures, for every living thing, as we protected the blessed life of {Pet’s Name}.  May his/her memory bless our lives with love and caring forever.  Amen.

Or this shorter version, especially if children are not involved. Modify the “I” to “we” as necessary:

O Lord our God, {Pet’s Name}, who brought such joy in life, has died. Thank you for creating {Pet’s name}, for entrusting him/her to my care for a measure of time, and for all the good times and the happiness that he/she brought. 

All that lives must die, and I knew that this day would come, but the reality of death is hard, and I am grieving.

O God, as I have taken care of {Pet’s Name} in life, watch over him/her in death. You gave him/her breath; now I entrust him/her to you.

As I remember {Pet’s Name}, may his/her memory lead me to love and care for the people around me, and praise you by respecting the life of every creature. Amen

Our Father…

Glory be…

Hymn to be sung as the deceased pet is carried to the place of interment.

All things bright and beautiful,
All creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful:
The Lord God made them all.

Each little flower that opens,
Each little bird that sings,
He made their glowing colors,
He made their tiny wings.

The purple headed mountains,
The river running by,
The sunset and the morning
That brightens up the sky.

The cold wind in the winter,
The pleasant summer sun,
The ripe fruits in the garden,
He made them every one.

He gave us eyes to see them,
And lips that we might tell
How great is God Almighty,
Who has made all things well.

 Place the body in the grave and encourage the children to assist with placing the soil on the body and filling in the grave. Place a pot plant or plant a flowering bush to mark the grave.

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