Funeral Policy during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Funeral Policy for the First United Church of Christ, Congregational, Milford, CT
During Coronavirus Pandemic (Early Summer 2020)
Determined by Deacons and Pastors, updated June 8, 2020

For Christians, gathering to mourn the dead, celebrate their life and proclaim the hope of Resurrection are essential practices of our faith. During the extraordinary circumstances of the COVID19 outbreak, our usual mourning rituals have been interrupted.

We think of those women on that first Easter, who went to follow their familiar mourning ritual to anoint Jesus's body, to find it disrupted. We remember their initial shock and confusion and feel it too. We're waiting to feel the hope of resurrection. In times of trial like the death of a loved one, we turn to the familiar practices and rituals of our faith and ancestors. And so we know that this disruption for a grieving community is doubly hard. We grieve this disruption with you.

In March 2020, Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont declared a State of Emergency and set limits on gatherings that have changed over the phasing of the pandemic.

During this phase of Connecticut's State of Emergency, First Church Milford will be limited in our funeral practices in the following ways:

Viewing/Wake: We are not able to accommodate a wake.

Graveside: A pastor is able to participate in a graveside service outdoors, with participants practicing social distancing of 6 feet between one another. The graveside service can be live-streamed.

Memorial Services: First Church Milford is not scheduling indoor funerals or memorial services, but if a graveside needs to be brought indoors due to inclement weather, up to 25 family members may be allowed into the Sanctuary if we can accommodate the family on short notice.

Repast/Reception: We are not able to host a reception or meal following the funeral at this time.

While we are limited in what we are able to host or participate in at this time, we are also able to plan for memorials after the pandemic has passed. We would welcome the opportunity to host a memorial service for your loved one at a later date when all can safely gather and celebrate their life.

Rev. Adam Eckhart, Senior Pastor
Rev. Ashley Grant, Associate Pastor

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