The loneliest place on earth is at social functions surrounding the occasional services. Sometimes it feels like the party involved wants you at the funeral dinner or the reception because you are an important part of the decor but nothing more. You are just as necessary as white frosting on the wedding cake, but no more interesting or involved than that. It can be very lonely and uncomfortable and downright awkward. Don’t be insulted. They don’t meant it that way. Just say your prayer, eat quickly, say good-bye to the bride and get out. Everyone will be more comfortable that way. Don’t take it personally. There is no real solution. You can’t make them like you. But understanding the reality does ease the burden some.