In the face of death, the Christian community confidently proclaims that God has created each person for eternal life and that Jesus Christ, by his death and resurrection, has broken the chains of sin and death that bound humanity.
The celebration of the Christian funeral brings hope and consolation to the living. While proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ and witnessing to Christian hope in the resurrection, the funeral rites also recall to all those who take part in them God’s mercy and judgment and meet the human need to turn always to God in time of crisis.
The first celebration takes the form of a Vigil for the Deceased. It is usually celebrated at the funeral home the day/evening before the Funeral Mass or liturgy and includes readings from Scripture, songs, and prayers for the deceased and the mourners. A member of the family or friend of the deceased may offer words of remembrance at the conclusion of this celebration.
The second celebration is the Funeral Mass. This celebration of the Eucharist takes place in our parish church. The Christian community offers praise and thanks to God for the gift of Christian life. Listening to God’s word and sharing in communion, we are strengthened by God’s presence and supported by the worshipping community to face the pain of loss. The Funeral Mass is not permitted on Sundays, holy days of obligation, and during the Sacred Triduum of Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday.
The final celebration is the Rite of Committal. This is usually celebrated at the place of burial and includes prayer and a blessing over the final resting place of the deceased.
The parish priest is usually available to pray with the family at the time of death. The parish priest can assist in choosing prayers, readings, hymns, and other options which are appropriate for Christian funeral rites. A eulogy is never permitted during the Funeral Mass or liturgy outside the Mass.
The parish centre may be made available for a luncheon reception following the funeral rites. Arrangements can be made by contacting the parish office.