peachtree road storybook

Write down for the coming generation what the Lord has done, so that people not yet born will praise him. – Psalms 102:18

The Funeral Guild

By Marcia Gaddis and Eve Respess

Being a volunteer host or hostess at a funeral service is a gift not only to a grieving family, but also to friends and non-church members who are first-time visitors. As visitors, Funeral Guild members can offer guidance and direction for the service.

The Funeral and Memorial Guild was an idea proposed in 2005 by Lynne Wilke and Katie Lindquist to then associate pastor, Paul Morris. Seeing the need for more volunteers than the Altar Guild could provide this guild was organized of both men and women to work in teams on a weekly basis. The first chairpersons were: Lynne Wilke and Katie Lindquist, Nancy Floyd, Malinda Cook, Jane Hill and Harriet Haverhill. Four to five people worked together as a team. Women wore Altar Guild smocks over black clothing, and men wore dark suits. Team members wore name tags identifying them as Funeral Guild members. Through the years, volunteers have come and gone, but the team approach has stood the test of time.

One might think the duties of this guild are primarily to stand by the guest book or hand out the printed program. In a large church such as Peachtree Road, the duties are many. Once a family requests the location of the service, Sanctuary or Chapel, and where they would prefer family and friends to gather before the service, the Funeral Guild goes into action. Duties include changing of paraments, lighting candles, placement of flowers and reserved seating ribbons as well as managing the guest book and answering questions.

When the church is contacted about the need for a funeral service, it is the role of the Senior Pastor’s assistant to communicate the details for the service to pertinent staff associates and guild representative.

Anyone who has been the recipient of the services of the Funeral Guild recognizes and appreciates the servant heart of these faithful volunteers who come, prepare, serve, and provide a comfortable setting for the bereaved family.