This afternoon we gather to pay our last respects to, and celebrate the life of Miss Irene Allan aged 100. A long life, lived in faithful service of her Lord and Saviour, at great personal cost both literal and metaphorical.
I hope the weather does not deter those who would wish to do so from attending the service, and I hope as she peeps down from heaven, which she is convinced will be open for her to allow her to observe, she is pleased with what we have created for her. (My own, since teenage, intuitive theology has been that we attend our own funerals, no matter what orthodoxy might claim, so I am sure she will be there one way or another).
It is a privilege to conduct the services for this saint of God, and I pray that as we celebrate and commemorate her life, we find encouragement and inspiriation for our own continuing lives. (Yes, that's pretty much a paraphase of one of the standard funeral prayers I will use later today!)