Catholic funeral rites are composed of three services: Prayer Vigil, Funeral Liturgy, and the Rite of Committal at the gravesite.
The Vigil is a time of remembrance, adjusting to the fact of death and the sorrow it entails, while finding strength and consolation through faith in Christ and his resurrection. The Funeral Liturgy is the central celebration of the Church’s funeral rites. Through it, the community recalls Christ’s resurrection and prays that the deceased, who was united with Christ in baptism, will also share in his resurrection. With the Rite of Committal, the Church acknowledges the reality of separation and commends the deceased to God, while remembering the spiritual bond that still exists between the living and the dead and looking to the time when all will be reunited in the resurrection.
Preparing the funeral of someone you love is an act of love. For Catholic Christians, this loving act also expresses our faith in the power of Jesus’ resurrection. This love and faith are central to what death means to a Christian. Life is changed, not ended – those who die pass through death to new life in God. In God, our bonds of love remain intact. During this time of sorrow and grief, you will not be alone. This Christian community will walk with you before, during, and after the funeral liturgies. May God’s peace be with you.