FUNERAL GUIDELINES AT ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI
If you are reading this information after the death of a loved one, we at St. Francis of Assisi Church extend our deepest sympathy. We will do all we can to ensure a respectful and meaningful liturgy in accordance with the rites and traditions of the Catholic Church.
After the funeral home consultant calls the parish office to coordinate the date and time of the funeral with our pastor, a trained bereavement volunteer will contact the family to set a planning time with a team of planners and the priest. This funeral coordinator will offer a planning kit or containing a guide sheet, potential 1st Readings, 2nd Readings, and music options. During the meeting, the liturgy planners will learn more about your loved one and help you finalize appropriate readings and music for the service. As many family members and friends as appropriate may come to the rectory for this meeting.
The fee for a funeral at St. Francis of Assisi is $200. The amount covers items such as utilities, music, and janitorial time. Many funeral homes include the fee in their billing and pay the parish directly. If the fee is not included on your statement, please write a check to St. Francis of Assisi and give it to the priest or the coordinator or drop it off at the parish office. We have a convenient space for visitation in the library area with a view of the St. Francis garden. We can arrange for tables and easels for displays as needed. If you choose to use this location for visitation, an additional donation of $50 would be appreciated. Any honorarium for the priest is separate from these fees.
The parish will cover the ministries for Mass. These roles include an organist, lectors, cantors, ushers, servers and Eucharistic ministers. Our music director has final discretion for approval of music selections, visiting musicians and visiting vocalists. In general, music selections must be in our hymnals to allow participation by the congregation. At the planning session, the group may discuss having family members serve in some of these capacities.
Office staff will print worship aids (programs) for use at the funeral.
St. Francis of Assisi parish offers luncheons following funeral Masses as long as space and sufficient volunteers are available. The planners will share general information and help you make contact with the Martha Ministry leaders, if a luncheon is desired. We ask families to pay the cost of the entrée, with the parish providing all other items.
Because cremation is increasingly common, a brief summary of Catholic teaching related to cremation is included here. For more complete information see the Order of Christian Funerals: Appendix 2 or CLICK HERE for more information about the Church regarding cremation. Basic information is as follows:
- The Church allows cremation as long as the cremation does not represent a denial of one’s faith in the resurrection of the body. (#2301 Catechism)
- Even with cremation, the ideal is to have the earthly body at the church for the funeral rites. The Catholic Church encourages the celebration of the funeral Mass, within a reasonable time after death, prior to cremation. (#413 Order of Christian Funerals: Appendix 2: Cremation) If this is not practical, given the circumstances, a Mass may be celebrated with the cremated remains present. As a sign of our respect for the cremated remains, our parish offers an ossuary, a wooden box with hand-carved angels in which the cremains may be placed during the Mass, in order to give all containers of ashes the same dignity.
- The cremated remains are to be treated with the same respect given to any deceased human body. Therefore, the Church encourages burial or entombment in a columbarium. With burial, the loved one follows the pattern of Christ, who died, was buried and rose. The Church especially discourages the scattering of cremated remains over land or water and the division of cremains into multiple containers, jewelry or novelty items. (#417 Order of Christian Funerals: Appendix 2: Cremation)
Once again, we at St. Francis of Assisi Church extend our condolences to you. We months to come. If you have any questions, please call the parish secretary at (937) 433-1013, and she will direct your inquiry to the appropriate person.
GRIEF RECOVERY SUPPORT
St. Francis of Assisi Parish organizes a GriefShare series several times a year. Both evening and daytime groups are offered. Please check the parish website or call the office at (937) 433-1013 for more information.
PRE-PLANNING A FUNERAL
If you inquiring about pre-planning a funeral, please call the parish office when you are ready. We have experienced volunteers available to work with you confidentially to make note of your wishes. Once completed, a copy of the planning sheet is filed at the parish office.