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On the Death of the Beloved: Funeral Poem & Blessing by Irish Poet John O’Donohue

Published Tuesday, Feb. 8th, 2022


Reading a poem at a funeral or memorial service is a beautiful way to honor a lost loved one. 


This poem, by John O’Donohue, honors the grief of losing someone so dear to our heart, while celebrating the memory of a vibrant life well lived. 


O’Donohue was a contemporary Irish priest, poet, author, and philosopher, who spent much of his life studying Celtic spirituality. His inspired words have brought comfort to many over the years. 


If you’ve been asked to officiate a funeral or memorial service, read: 


How to Officiate a Funeral or Memorial Service


Then, become an ordained minister online with AMM and learn how to celebrate life rites in your community, including funerals, weddings, handfastings, and other blessings.




On The Death Of The Beloved
By John O’Donohue



Update April 5, 2023: To read the full text, please click this link. 




Why are we talking about memorial services on American Weddings?

We spend a lot of time talking about wedding ceremonies here on the American Weddings blog. This makes sense... Wedding ceremonies (and wedding officiants) are awesome! And they’re our primary focus and passion. 
But AMM Ministers don’t just marry people. When they choose to, their roles can extend much further, supporting their communities in important ways, and celebrating not just new beginnings, but endings, too. This deserves to be highlighted. 
Ordination through American Marriage Ministries gives our ministers all of the same rights and protections held by ministers ordained through traditional brick-and-mortar churches.
As an AMM Minister (or Reverend, Pastor, or Officiant, whatever title you choose), your right to conduct religious ceremonies of all forms is protected by the religious non-establishment clause of the first amendment. 
While many of our ministers only conduct wedding ceremonies, others also conduct baptisms, funerals, baby blessings, and other meaningful rites. 
Learn more about what it means to be an AMM Minister by visiting our FAQ page.




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Jessica Levey
Jessica Levey

Lead Staff Writer & Illustrator

Jessica loves exploring the history and magic of ritual, the connections between people and places, and sharing true stories about love and commitment. She's an advocate for marriage equality, LGBTQ+ rights, and individuality, and is an ordained Minister with AMM. When she’s not writing or illustrating for AMM, she enjoys city hikes, fantasy novels, comics, and traveling.

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