Welcome to a new way of doing funeral and mourning.
A way which dispel the shadows of gloom and doubt and recovers the True Light about where our hope as Christians should and must be.
And you, as spiritual directors, are invited to learn how to do this for your directees when they face that darkest moment of their lives: the death of a loved one.
Not that the old way of doing funeral was wrong. It was right. But over the past several decades we seem to have lost what all this means, and how vital “getting it right” is to reconciling ourselves to the passing of our loved one, and finding our horizon again in order to be able to live our lives in hope and reassurance.
In an increasingly secularized world, it is up to us to reclaim that essential spirituality which clings steadfastly to all of us. And who better to provide this in the lives of your directees but you.
As a spiritual director, you already know the language and symbolism of the rites of passage, and death is one of those. You understand ritual, active listening, providing a safe place for emotions and beliefs, and the importance of being available to your directees when they need you.
If they are members of a faith community, so much the better, as the clergy there will probably handle the services for their loved one. You, then, may walk with your directees through their mourning.
But if they do not have benefit of clergy, then someone needs to step up and in and design and preside at that all-important funeral service cycle in order to provide your directee with the landmarks they need to begin to navigate their world in confidence and hope once more.
The Tenebrae Society provides all the details you need to do just that. And more.
Here you will find resources, and courses, and mentoring, and an engaged community of like-spirited people, and togeher, we can begin to take back that secularized landsacape and bring our directees through the Shadow of Death and into the Life of Hope which our faith provides.
Tenebrae. Traditionally a service which marks the suffering and death of Jesus Christ. And people need to come through that in order to arrive at the Resurrection and life eternal in the presence of God. Death and the funeral and mourning cycle are all tied in to the concept of Tenebrae, a service of shadows. Successively, each candle on the Tenebrae hearse, or candelabra, is extinguished. All but the topmost Christ Candle, which never is put out. Staying bright, even though hidden for a time, to be a beacon of hope for all.
Dare to lead your directess through those places.
Care enough about your directees to see them through to the return of the light.
And share with them your understanding of faith and hope, dispelling the shadows, and restoring the Light.