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  • Writer's pictureFr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Funeral Program for Aniyah Hayes

Burial Office for

Aniyah Jar'Ne Hayes (2006-2022)

Saturday, June 25, 2022, at 11:00 AM

Note: At the family's request, this service will not be live-streamed.

The Burial of a Child

[Adapted from Enriching Our Worship 2, pp. 131-146]

Prelude & Welcome

LEV #181: Amazing Grace

1 Amazing grace! how sweet the sound,

That saved a wretch like me!

I once was lost, but now am found,

Was blind, but now I see.

2 ’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,

And grace my fears relieved;

How precious did that grace appear

The hour I first believed!

3 The Lord has promised good to me,

His word my hope secures;

He will my shield and portion be

As long as life endures.

4 Through many dangers, toils, and snares,

I have already come;

’Tis grace that brought me safe thus far,

And grace will lead me home.

5 When we’ve been there ten thousand years,

Bright shining as the sun,

We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise

Than when we’d first begun.

[Words: Stanzas 1-4, John Newton; Stanza 5, ascribed to John Rees, Public Domain. Music: New Britain, Public Domain; harm. John Barnard © 1982, The Jubilate Group (admin. Hope Publishing Company). Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #90111. All rights reserved.]

The Opening Anthems

[EOW2, p. 132]

“The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms” (Deuteronomy 33:27).

God said, “As a mother comforts her child, so I will comfort you” (Isaiah 66:13a).

“Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs’” (Matthew 19:14)

“For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of the water of life, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes” (Revelation 7:17).

The Collect of the Day

[EOW2, 133]

The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Let us pray:

Holy God, your beloved Son took children into his arms and blessed them. Help us to entrust Aniyah to your never-failing lovingkindness. Comfort us as we bear the pain of her/his death, and reunite us in your good time in your Paradise; through Jesus Christ our Savior who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Gracious God, we come before you this day in pain and sorrow. We grieve the loss of Aniyah, a precious human life. Give your grace to those who grieve that they may find comfort in your presence and be strengthened by your Spirit. Be with this your family as they mourn, and draw them together in your healing love; in the name of the one who suffered, died, and rose for us, Jesus our Savior. Amen.

A Reading from the First Letter to the Thessalonians (4:13-14, 18)

Brothers and sisters, we want you to know about people who have died so that you won’t mourn like others who don’t have any hope. Since we believe that Jesus died and rose, so we also believe that God will bring with him those who have died in Jesus. … So encourage each other with these words.

The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Psalm 46:1-7

[BCP, p. 643]

Read in Unison

1 As the deer longs for the water-brooks, * so longs my soul for you, O God.

2 My soul is athirst for God, athirst for the living God; * when shall I come to appear before the presence of God?

3 My tears have been my food day and night, * while all day long they say to me, "Where now is your God?"

4 I pour out my soul when I think on these things; * how I went with the multitude and led them into the house of God,

5 With the voice of praise and thanksgiving, * among those who keep holy-day.

6 Why are you so full of heaviness, O my soul? * and why are you so disquieted within me?

7 Put your trust in God; * for I will yet give thanks to him, who is the help of my countenance, and my God.

The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to St. Mark (10:13-16)

Glory to you, Lord Christ.

People were bringing children to Jesus so that he would bless them. But the disciples scolded them. When Jesus saw this, he grew angry and said to them, “Allow the children to come to me. Don’t forbid them, because God’s kingdom belongs to people like these children. I assure you that whoever doesn’t welcome God’s kingdom like a child will never enter it.” Then he hugged the children and blessed them.

The Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, Lord Christ.

The Sermon

By the Rev. Fr. Guillermo A. Arboleda

LEV #203: There is a Balm in Gilead


There is a balm in Gilead

to make the wounded whole;

There is a balm in Gilead

to heal the sin-sick soul.

1 Sometimes I feel discouraged,

And think my work’s in vain,

But then the holy spirit

Revives my soul again. [REFRAIN]

2 If you cannot preach like Peter,

If you cannot preach like Paul,

You can tell the love of Jesus,

And say He died for all. [REFRAIN]

3 Don’t ever be discouraged

For Jesus is your friend,

And if you lack for knowledge,

He’ll ne’er refuse to lend. [REFRAIN]

[Words: Traditional, Public Domain. Music: American Melody, Public Domain; arr. Carl Haywood © 1992 from The Haywood Collection of Negro Spirituals. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #84268. All rights reserved.]

The Apostles’ Creed

[BCP, p. 496]

In the assurance of eternal life given at Baptism, let us proclaim our faith and say,

I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended to the dead. On the third day he rose again. He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer

[BCP, p. 364]

And now, as our Savior Christ has taught us, we are bold to say,

Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name,

Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.

Prayers of the People

[EOW2, p. 135]

The Deacon or other person appointed says

In the peace of God, let us pray, responding “O God, have mercy.”

In the assurance of your mercy, in thanksgiving for the life of your child Aniyah, and in confident expectation of the resurrection to eternal life, we pray,

O God, have mercy.

Remember Aniyah’s parents, Jar’Quita and Jermaine, and her siblings Chynna, Ryu, RaiDon, Rahjai, and Micah, that they may be enfolded in love, comforted in fear, honored in their grief, and kept safe, we pray

O God, have mercy.

Remember all the family and friends of Aniyah, that they may know the consolation of your love, and may hold Aniyah in their love all the days of their lives, we pray

O God, have mercy.

Support them in their grief, and be present to all who mourn, we pray

O God, have mercy.

Teach us to be patient and gentle with ourselves and each other as we grieve, we pray

O God, have mercy.

Help us to know and accept that we will be reunited at your heavenly banquet, we pray

O God, have mercy.

Finally, our God, help us become co-creators of a world in which children are happy, healthy, loved and do not know want or hunger, we pray

O God, have mercy.

The Minister concludes the prayers with this Collect

Compassionate God, your ways are beyond our understanding, and your love for those whom you create is greater by far than ours; comfort all who grieve for this child Aniyah. Give them the faith to endure the wilderness of bereavement and bring them in the fullness of time to share with Aniyah the light and joy of your eternal presence; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Musical Solo

Sung by Shadonna Williams, Aniyah’s Aunt

The Eulogies

by Friends and Family Members

The Blessing of the People

[Adapted from Enriching Our Worship 1, p. 71]

Live without fear: your Creator has made you holy, has always protected you, and loves you as a mother. Go in peace to follow the good road and the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be among you, and remain with you always. Amen.

The Dismissal

[BCP, p. 366]

Let us go forth in the name of Christ!

Thanks be to God!

LEV #217: He's Got The Whole World in His Hands

1 He’s got the whole world in His hand.

He’s got the whole world in His hand.

He’s got the whole world in His hand.

He’s got the whole world in His hand.

2 He’s got you and me sister in His hand.

He’s got you and me sister in His hand.

He’s got you and me sister in His hand.

He’s got the whole world in His hand.

3 He’s got you and me brother in His hand.

He’s got you and me brother in His hand.

He’s got you and me brother in His hand.

He’s got the whole world in His hand.

4 He’s got the pretty little baby in His hand.

He’s got the pretty little baby in His hand.

He’s got the pretty little baby in His hand.

He’s got the whole world in His hand.

5 He’s got everybody here in His hand.

He’s got everybody here in His hand.

He’s got everybody here in His hand.

He’s got the whole world in His hand.

[Words: Traditional, Public Domain. Music: Negro Spiritual, Public Domain. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #106881. All rights reserved.]


You may give to St. Matthew's online at:

Today's Ministers:

Celebrant & Preacher: The Rev. Guillermo A. Arboleda

Organist & Choirmaster: Ms. Beryl C. Dandy

Note: This service is reproduced from The Book of Common Prayer 1979 (BCP), The Hymnal 1982 (Hymn), Lift Every Voice and Sing II: An African American Hymnal (LEV), African American Heritage Hymnal (AAHH) and other sources cited. The Scripture readings are from the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) of the Bible.

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