COVID-19 Updated Guidance

March 24, 2020

Guidance for Ministers, Session Clerks and Deacons Court Clerks

COVID-19: Wedding and Funeral Guidance 24th March 2020

Following government updates to guidance on 23 and 24 March, the Free Church of Scotland guidance in relation weddings and funerals is now: 


Weddings have been stopped by the Government.


It is advised that all meetings with the bereaved (aside from the funeral itself) are held by telephone or video, rather than face-to-face.

Funerals will normally be held at the graveside, crematoriums and funeral homes, and must be restricted to immediate family only. Those in attendance should follow latest public health advice on social distancing and good hygiene.  Note that social distancing is strongly advised for those aged 70 or over, people with underlying health conditions, and pregnant women. People in these groups are strongly discouraged from attending. 

In exceptional circumstances, and at the discretion of the minister (having satisfied himself that health risks can be appropriately managed), a funeral service may be held in a church building. Again, the service must be restricted to immediate family only and the latest public health advice on social distancing and good hygiene should be followed. 

This guidance is subject to change. Ministers should also consult with funeral directors, crematoria staff etc as appropriate for latest guidance affecting funeral activities locally.