The Funeral Ceremony : The Spirit And The Body Separate

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As with many religions, Mormons believe that at death, the spirit and the body separate. The spirit then goes to judgment by God and is either sent to paradise or prison in the spirit world. Most Mormons see death as something to mourn, but it is also seen as a time of great hope because it is a major transitional step to the next life and, ultimately, to an eternal life with God. For this reason, Mormon funeral ceremonies can be upbeat events. This is especially true if the deceased was a committed Mormon that lived an exemplary life. Mormons believe in heaven, which is defined as "the place where God lives and the future home of those who follow Him." Faithful Mormons and their families will live in the presence of God and be rewarded …show more content…

This is the washing and anointing of the patron. Male officiators perform the ritual for the men, and female officiators for the women. The ceremony is the same for members of each sex. The patron enters the booth, and receives the washing, which consists of a token wetting of each part of the body by the officiator, reaching underneath the shield, accompanied by a set blessing to the effect that that body part will function properly. The head, eyes, nose, neck, shoulders, arms, loins, legs, feet, etc. are all washed and blessed. The officiators then place their hands upon the head of the patron and with a short prayer "seal" the washing upon him, this "cleansing" him from the "sins of this generation. The anointing follows immediately, and is identical with the washing, except that each body part is "anointed," that is, touched with a small amount of olive oil. The anointing is also sealed upon him. The deceased is then dressed in all white for purity and is ready for the veil. The veil is a large white cloth, hanging from the ceiling and reaching to the floor, separating the room where the previous ceremonies have taken place from the Celestial Room. It represents the separation between the mortal state and the heavenly state, and thus "passing through the veil" is meant to be symbolic of leaving this existence and passing into the presence of God, as represented by the Celestial Room.

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