Fifteen Crazy Things That Happened at Funerals

As I promised in last week’s article on weddings, I have fifteen stories from pastors about funerals.

For the most part, these stories are repeated only with minor changes. The essence of the stories is unchanged. Like the stories of weddings, there were so many great submissions of funeral stories. I probably need more posts of this ilk in the future.

  1. The pastor was preaching on the resurrection during the funeral when Siri on someone’s iPhone began to speak, “I’m sorry; I don’t understand what you just said.”
  2. Three different pastors told us they fell in the grave.
  3. Three different widows jumped in the grave.
  4. The deceased’s dog died shortly after the deceased died. The family put the dead animal in the casket with her.
  5. The family released a dove at the end of the funeral. A hawk was waiting. You know the rest of the story.
  6. One lady gave a testimony at her deceased pastor’s funeral: “Having Jim as my pastor was like being in a love affair.”
  7. The pastor was interrupted during the funeral and asked to adjust the deceased in the casket because she did not look perky.
  8. The best friend of the deceased gave a eulogy sharing how he and the now deceased picked up women.
  9. During the viewing of the deceased, a song was on continuous loop: “How Much Is That Doggy in the Window?”
  10. The pastor was asked to pose with the urn of ashes for photos after the funeral.
  11. The funeral home showed up with the wrong body.
  12. This funeral had two ambulances: one to pick up a man having a heart attack; and the other to get a woman in labor.
  13. There were two funerals close together. They finished at the same time. One funeral released doves. The other funeral had a salute with several guns. There were many dead doves.
  14. The widow began shouting and praying for her husband to rise from the dead.
  15. An Elvis impersonator was one of the key speakers.

I would wonder if some of these pastors were stretching the truth if I had not been in some similar situations at funerals. Life in the ministry is never dull.

Let me hear from you, particularly if you have some funeral stories to share.

Posted on June 1, 2016

With nearly 40 years of ministry experience, Thom Rainer has spent a lifetime committed to the growth and health of local churches across North America.
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  • there was this woman claimed she when she died and put in her tomb she said she would burst out of her tomb in 4 days she sure did they had a earthquake and she rolled out of thr tomb in 4 days

  • Patricia, New Zealand says on

    I can remember playing the organ for a funeral service in a small Anglican Church. The Funeral Director tactfully mentioned that matters with the congregation were rather sensitive. The deceased, a respected married man and pillar of the church about 70 years of age was found in a compromising position with lady who was not his wife. In the front row was his wife, the row behind mistress 1 and at the back of the church mistress 2. The pre-music used consisted of quietly played Bach music.

  • Amanda Morris says on

    Once while waiting for my husband to conclude a graveside funeral service I saw the granddaughter of the deceased behind everyone grieving with her son. I walked back to comfort her. I listened to her as she explained how she and her son deal with difficult situations. I looked over at her son (5 years old) and noticed him peeing on someone’s tombstone and said y’all have a weird way of dealing with issues. After my comment she looked at her son and busted out laughing. No one knew why we were laughing during the funeral.

  • Gary Bruce says on

    While officiating at a graveside service for a young man who had lived a rather wild life, his family arrived drunken and stoned. While I attempted to maintain some measure of dignity the family decided to play a song but the massive boombox they were using wouldnt work. Suddenly one of them jumped up and ran to his car, started it and drove it right up to the grave. While I stood in disbelief he popped the tape in, turned the volume way up and left the door open so everyone could listen to “Achey, Breaky Heart.

  • Scott N says on

    I was doing my first graveside service ever and was talking with the funeral director a bit out at the cemetery. The second thing he asks me is “So, do you have a lot of old people in your church?”

  • Christina says on

    My father was a Southern Baptist pastor that served the same church for 39 years. He always said that he preferred funerals over weddings, because there was no rehearsal.

    There are numerous funny stories that I could tell, but one in particular stands out in my mind.

    On the way to the cemetery, Dad’s car was directly behind the hearse. He was talking to a deacon who was seated in the passenger seat. He pulled out of the motorcade and passed the hearse. (I guess it was going too slow for him.)

  • David Rohr says on

    I was a missionary in Brazil for many years. In Brazil poorer people rent grave sites for 4 to 7 years instead of purchasing them. At the graveside service for one of our dearest senior ladies, her son noticed the skull of the previous occupant of the grave staring at everyone from a pile of dirt. He tried to nudge it out of sight with his foot and ended up falling into the grave. Not a stellar moment.

  • Actually happened and reminds us all to be prepared. The funeral was over and the funeral possession to the grave was in progress. As is tradition the order is Hearse/family, pastor, friends etc. Pastor noticed that he did not have enough gas to get to the grave. So with all the cars behind him, he had to pull in to a gas station to get enough gas to get to the grave site. Rumor has it that gas station did a LOT of extra business that day with all the cars behind the pastor.

  • I conducted a funeral for a woman but did not know her or the family. The family had requested to allow attendees who knew the deceased to speak of their relationship. One man said that when visiting her one time she let out a little gas while preparing their meal. He said he didn’t mind for we all have a little stink in us.

  • David Holder says on

    My “Heavy Metal” funeral: The deceased was buried with a can of beer and a pack of cigarettes. Pallbearers all wore Pink Floyd “Dark Side of The Moon” tshirts. When we went to the graveside, the funeral director told me, “Say what you gotta say, then leave. It’s fixin’ to get ugly!” And there’s more…

  • Rick Stigile says on

    I was asked to conduct the funeral of the step-father of a young man who only attended the Sun PM service due to work schedule. It was my first church, and I had been there 2 weeks.

    Throughout the service, on top of my nerves, I noticed that the people seemed to be getting uncomfortable with me, and I thought they could have been more patient.

    On the way to the cemetery, my wife asked, “Honey, what is the name of the man you are burying?” I said, “Mr. Flamingale.”

    She opened the bulletin and said, “No it’s not. It is Mr. Fillingame!”

    No wonder the people were getting uncomfortable!

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