At the death of a Christian, whose life of faith was begun in the waters of baptism and strengthened at the Eucharistic table, the Church intercedes on behalf of the deceased because of its confident belief that death is not the end nor does it break the bonds forged in life. The Church also ministers to the sorrowing and consoles them in the funeral rites with the comforting word of God and the sacrament of the Eucharist. (Order of Christian Funerals, #4)
Scheduling and Planning the Funeral Mass
When a family member passes away, the first step is to contact the funeral home of your choice. In many cases, the funeral home will contact the church on your behalf to check on possible dates and times. When that is not the case, or it is the preference of the family, after contacting the funeral home, the family should contact the Parish Office to schedule the funeral Mass, discuss fees, etc.
After scheduling the funeral Mass with the Parish Office, a member of the Parish funeral planning team will contact the family to schedule an in-person meeting and will guide them through the selection of readings from scripture and sacred music. Click here for a selection of some of those readings for your review. Click here for a selection of hymns that are traditionally used for funerals.
Individual, personal tributes are traditionally reserved for the wake service at the funeral home (prior to the funeral Mass) or for a reception following Mass. Eulogies at Mass are allowed but are intended to be a brief reflection on the faith life of the deceased, and we recommend there be only one eulogy and that it be kept to a maximum of 5 minutes. Here at St. Joseph Catholic Church eulogies traditionally take place just before Mass begins.
Cremation is allowed in the Catholic faith. The proper respect given to the body of the deceased is likewise to be accorded to the cremated remains, both in handling and in final disposition of cremated remains. Thus the scattering of ashes or the reserving of ashes privately on mantel shelves or even in lockets or other mementos is not in keeping with the respect owed to the cremated remains of loved ones.
For More Information
If you have any additional questions, please contact the Parish Office (941.756.3732 or [email protected]).