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DELIVERING DEATH NOTICES


When I lived in Albuquerque I was trained by the Albuquerque Police Department to deliver death notifications to people in town. The Police Department used local preachers wearing suits with Police Chaplain badges instead of sending uniformed officers because it was shocking enough to hear such sad news without the extra strain of a uniformed officer delivering it. The other reason for using preachers is that we could stay after delivering the notice and offer words of comfort to the family. It wasn’t the most pleasant thing I ever did (delivering death notices), but it was helpful pastoral training for a young minister right out of college. It was difficult to look people in the eye and tell them a family member has died.

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