Funeral Catholic


Preparing a Catholic Funeral

The main rituals are the Vigil for the deceased, the Funeral mass and the rite of Christian Burial. The celebration of the Eucharist at the funeral is an opportunity for the community of the faithful and the family to “learn to live in communion with the one has fallen asleep in the Lord” through our prayer and faith in Christ.

The Vigil for the Deceased

The Vigil for the deceased is often the first time for the family, friends and members of the parish community gather in remembrance of the deceased for prayer and support. Celebrated in the Mortuary Home, the Vigil centers on listening to the Word of the Lord from Sacred Scriptures, psalms, prayer and songs. Two lectors are usually necessary for reading.  The priest or Deacon may proclaim the Gospel and give a brief homily and then continue with the prayers. At the end, it is the preferred time for relatives and friends to share remembrances of the deceased with an emphasis on trust in God’s mercy and hope for eternal life.

The Funeral Mass

The Funeral liturgy is the central celebration of the Christian community for the deceased. At the Funeral Mass, the community gathers with the family and friends to commend the deceased to God’s tender mercy and compassion, and to seek strength in the proclamation of the Paschal Mystery.

The first part is the greeting at the entrance of the church. The casket or urn in the case of cremation is sprinkled with holy water as a reminder of the deceased’s baptism. The Pall is then placed on the casket, a reminder of the baptismal garment that symbolized life in Christ. Finally, the casket is led to the front of the church with family following where the priest recite the opening prayer.

The second part is the Liturgy of the Word with one or two readings and the gospel, followed by a homily presented by the presider. After this homily, the faithful prayers are presented by members of the family.

The third part is the Liturgy of the Eucharist, celebrated in the usual manner with the greeting of peace and the Holy Communion. After the Communion, the family can make some announcement for thanking the relatives and friends who attend the celebration giving them instruction for arriving to the cemetery or an eventual reception after the service.

The funeral conclude with the Final commendation. The body of the deceased is incensed during the song of the farewell. Then the procession is formed and the casket is carried to the place of the burial.

The Rite of Committal

The rite of Committal is the final part of the celebration caring for the body or cremated remains of the deceased. It is celebrated at the graveside, mausoleum or cemetery chapel by a priest or deacon who bless the grave where the remains of the deceased will rest in peace until the resurrection of all the faithful.

Planning the Funeral

For the arrangements of all the details, the family is supposed to contact first the Funeral Director at the Mortuary Home. He will put the family in contact with the parish and the priest who will celebrate the funeral.  The family can make their own choice of the readings, music and prayers. The parish usually offer names and phone numbers of the musicians available in the parish. The priest encourages the family to participate in the different parts of the celebration as readings, prayers and sharing.

We are here to help you. For further information, please, call the Parish Office. We’ll try to assist you in the best way. May your beloved one rest in the peace of Christ. r.i.p.
                                                                                All Souls parish


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