Funeral sermons are a very personal choice for families. Some choose to have an official from their loved ones church, cathedral, synagogue or other place of worship come to the funeral home to do a sermon, others choose to bring the deceased to the religious building for the sermon, while others choose not to have any religious discussion at all. The religion of the deceased will heavily affect the sermon itself, or if the deceased was not religious the family might choose a religious denomination or simply no religious connotation.
If the deceased was so inclined he or she may have prepared his or her own funeral arrangements beforehand so the sermon might already be lined up. In the event that you have to try to figure out what your loved one might have wanted it is usually prudent to stick with the traditional. In most cases even if the deceased was not religious, if they were born into and raised religious as a child their funeral will take on that religious undertone. It is usually best to keep things traditional to ensure the other family members be it parents, siblings or other, are not offended by sudden change in religious persuasion.
Regardless of what religion is represented or if no religion is represented funeral sermons are always a positive light speech either from a religious figure or family friend who was able to compose him or herself enough to speak publicly about the dearly departed. All funeral sermons contain the same basic messages which include bits about how the deceased was a great person and will be missed. Possibly the most important part of a funeral sermon is the part where the speaker will talk about the existence of an afterlife and the fact that the deceased is no longer suffering. This portion of every sermon is specifically for the benefit of the living who are attending the funeral. This portion should help the living to feel better about the fact that the deceased is no longer with them, but is in fact in a better place. For most this is little consolation as they would sooner have their loved one actively involved in their lives.
Some people find comfort in hearing pleasant things about the end of life transition, while others do not, the funeral sermon is designed for those who do; for the rest there was the visitation and the mass. The most likely time to hear family members break down and become extremely upset is during the funeral sermon. This is mostly because during the funeral sermon there is a lot of talk about the deceased on a personal level and many outward references to the fact that he or she is no longer with us. For some it is not until this moment that the depth of the situation is truly realized. It is during the funeral sermon that most family members struggle with the sad reality of their situation.