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There are three parts to be considered for a catholic funeral:

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The Vigil

At the vigil, the Christian community keeps watch with the family in prayer to the God of mercy and finds strength in Christ’s presence.

The Catholic vigil is a prayer service, usually held the evening before the funeral. The community of friends and family will usually gather for a service at the funeral home/mortuary.

In some cases the vigil can be held in the church. The vigil may include the rosary, scripture readings, homily and prayer for both the deceased and the grieving family.

Also, a eulogy may be read at the vigil instead of at the funeral service. A Bereavement Minister will preside at this service.

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The Funeral Mass

The core of the Catholic funeral celebration is the Mass. The Eucharist is at the center of the
Catholic faith – the celebration of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Scripture readings and prayer also play a prominent role in the Catholic funeral service, along with songs, hymns, and a brief eulogy.

A Priest must preside at this service.

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Interment

In the Catholic faith, there is great respect for the body. Catholics believe that the body is “the temple of the Lord” and that at the End of Days, there will be a resurrection of the body.

The interment takes place at the cemetery. A Bereavement Minister will preside at this service.

The parish office needs to be contacted to schedule a meeting to discuss the details of the funeral services for the deceased. Below is a form that is used at the meeting. It is suggested you sketch out your tentative wishes on the form and bring it to the meeting.

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