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What to do when a loved one dies.

The person of faith will be comforted by the Sacrament of the Sick, the Viaticum (Holy Communion brought to the dying) and the prayers for those who are near death. When in hospital the ward staff should be asked to call for the priest. When at home the priest should be called for.

After the death

If you are visiting this page in a time of sadness we extend our condolences and hope that we can help you through this difficult time.  Death is an occasion for reflection, sharing and thanksgiving.  We remember the dead in our personal prayer, their names can be included in the Newsletter, the Bidding Prayers, the November Pious List and a Mass can be requested for them.  The deceased does not have to be a Catholic for a Mass, a Service or for prayers to be offered for them.


Arranging a Funeral in our Parish

When a loved one has died, you will need to choose a funeral director.  The funeral director helps you liaise with the church and cemetery or crematorium.  When it comes to the format of the funeral and how you would like the liturgy to be arranged you will speak to Fr Atli.

A Prayer Vigil

This optional liturgy may be held in the church, at the departed's home or in a chapel of rest, the evening before the funeral.  It may be a Liturgy of the Word (prayers, reading from the Scriptures and a blessing), and it can also include, or simply be, a recitation of the Rosary.

The Funeral

The funeral may take one of two forms. 

The Requiem Mass is the ordinary form of a Catholic funeral.  A prayer vigil with the reception of the body or prayers at the home may precede it.  The funeral ends with the committal at a cemetery or a crematorium.  The format is: Greeting at the Church Door, Liturgy of the Word (the readings are found here), Liturgy of the Eucharist and Final Commendation.  

A Funeral Service can take place at church, a crematorium or at the grave side.  The format is as above but without the Liturgy of the Eucharist.  Greeting at the Church Door, Liturgy of the Word (the readings are found here) and Final Commendation.

The Committal

The committal concludes the funeral celebration, either at a graveside or crematorium.  The ashes should be kept together and buried in consecrated ground.

Involving Family and Friends

It is an honour to take part in the funeral of a loved one.  The immediate family chooses the readings and hymns for the funeral and, if desired, may write a Eulogy that can be delivered at the beginning of the Requiem Mass or Funeral Service.  The family, together with wider family and friends, may proclaim the readings, bring up the gifts of bread and wine at the offertory and read the bidding prayers.


The hymns chosen by the family will be given to one of our organists who will play on the day.  A liturgy should have religious music.  At a crematorium, the family's choice of music is left with the funeral director who in turn will liaise with the attendant.

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