COPING WITH DEATH by Leslie Scrase
In this short book author Leslie Scrase helps to uncover and explain those
emotions felt when having to deal with death, something we will all be involved
with during various parts of our lives but which is often so very difficult to
contemplate or discuss.
After many years of conducting Humanist ceremonies the author has gained a great
deal of sympathetic knowledge and understanding about bereavement and how to
cope with it.
Starting with the funeral ceremony itself, the book goes on to discuss the
problems of coping with untimely death, surviving and progressing after
bereavement, whether there is life after death, and dealing with the anger or
guilt which death can induce.
At the end of the book there are a good number of passages and poems to help
stimulate or bring comfort to readers, many of which could also be particularly
useful to anyone looking for something suitable to quote within a memorial ceremony.
The author conducted his first ceremony, a Sunday service in a small chapel in
North Devon, when he was 17 years old. When this edition comes out, he will
have been conducting ceremonies of one kind or another for 60 years. He became
a minister of religion, serving in various parts of this country and in South
India over a period of about 20 years.
Loss of religious faith took him to the British Humanist Association and the
conduct of Humanist ceremonies from the late 1970s until now. He sees himself
as no more than a voice, attempting to enable people to achieve the kind of
ceremony they desire. Inevitably this involves a good deal of flexibility and
For many years now he has conducted over a hundred ceremonies a year and in
recent years this has risen to over 150 a year which suggests that there is a
need for celebrants to take this kind of approach.
Twice married, he and Wendy share six children and a host of grandchildren
scattered through the south of England.