This week my fellow pastors & I discussed the pastor’s role at funerals with our pastoral apprentices, and I was glad to be able to commend this new book by Brian Croft and Phil Newton– Conduct Gospel-centered Funerals: Applying the gospel at the unique challenges of death. Newton and Croft are both experienced pastors who are themselves rooted in the gospel.
This book is an excellent resource for pastors. It gets to the “nitty-gritty” of funeral planning, pastoral care, and other areas associated with shepherding people through death. Years of experience provide so much helpful information down to walking carefully around the graveside! Also, I have heard some younger pastors, over-reacting to man-centered funerals, swing to the other extreme resulting in a situation where nothing at all is said about the person who has died. Since we believe people are made in the image of God, a proper funeral ought to honor the dignity of human life and the gravity of death, and in that context hold forth the gospel. This book demonstrates this holistic approach well.
If you are a pastor, you would do well to get a copy of this small, readable, practical, immensely helpful book.