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There is no reason  why a coffin cannot be driven up to a crematorium  without ceremony (PA)

We human beings are ceremonial animals and funerals are vital, even for the non-religious

A parish priest in Brooklyn, New York, sprinkles holy water on the casket of Bishop Octavio Cisneros (Photo: CNS)

Bishop of Meath, Ireland, clarifies that eulogies should never be part of a funeral Mass

Cardinal Angelo Scola celebrates the funeral mass for Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini

The breakdown of family and community life is behind dwindling numbers at funerals

Archdiocese of Liverpool is first in England and Wales to commission lay ministers to celebrate funeral ceremonies

Vaclav Havel's widow holds an urn containing his ashes (CTK Photo/Roman Vondrous)

The Italian Church’s newly promulgated Funeral Rites leave me in a quandary

Richard Ingrams: 'I do see the need for a hierarchy... It reminds me of politics a lot'

Co-founder of Private Eye and editor of the Oldie talks to the Herald about bishops, funerals and praying for the dead

Javier Ballesteros carries the ashes of his father Seve Ballesteros accompanied by his sister Carmen (Denis Doyle/Pool/PA Wire)

The funeral was attended not only by golf luminaries but also the ordinary people of the town