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Funerals and Memorial Masses


Although a funeral is not a specific sacrament, it is an important celebration of the life of the deceased person. "At the death of a Christian, whose life of faith was begun in the waters of Baptism and strengthened at the Eucharistic table, the Church intercedes on behalf of the deceased because of its confident belief that death is not the end, nor does it break the bonds forged in life. The Church also ministers to the sorrowing and consoles them in the funeral rites with the comforting Word of God and Sacrament of the Eucharist."  (Order of Christian Funerals, No. 4)

When a loved one dies, either the funeral home or a family member may contact Nancy at the parish office (239-774-3337, ext. 33) to schedule the funeral Mass. There are three types of Masses that are associated with the Rite of Christian Burial:

  • Mass of Christian Burial with the Body Present.
  • Mass of Christian Burial with the Ashes Present: The Church strongly prefers that cremation take place after the full funeral Mass with the body. If the ashes are brought into the Church, they are treated with the same dignity and respect as the body.
  • A Memorial Mass with no Body or Ashes Present: This Mass is usually celebrated when someone dies and is buried elsewhere.

Cremated Remains:

  • Respectful final disposition of cremated remains involves permanent interment or entombment, involving an appropriate urn or other worthy vessel.
  • "Although jewelry, dishes, statuary, and space capsules are offered commercially, they are unacceptable receptacles for cremated remains in Catholic funeral practices. It is also unacceptable for Catholics to have cremated remains made into jewelry, artwork, or other objects of display or consumption." (http.//www.catholic-cemeteries.org/cremation.aspx)
  • The practice of scattering cremated remains on the sea, from the air, or on the ground, or keeping cremated remains in the home of a relative or friend of the deceased are not the reverent disposition requires."  (Order of Christian Funerals, Appendix II #417)

Need help in dealing with your loss, learn about our Bereavement Support Ministry.