Planning a funeral mass for a loved one is one of the most difficult experiences we will face. This webpage offers you a step by step guide
to help you prepare for either your own funeral mass or the funeral mass of a loved one.
Note: If you are using this webpage to preplan your own funeral mass, please be certain to place a copy of the “Planning A Funeral Mass” form with your other important final documents.
When a Loved One is Seriously Ill
Please call St. Andrew's main office (919.362.0414) and request that a priest visit to give the sacrament of Anointing of the Sick. The main office can also make arrangements for a Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist to visit your loved one, pray with them, and give them Holy Communion.
When a Death Occurs
Please call St. Andrew's main office (919.362.0414). The receptionist will take down information about your loved one, your contact information, and which funeral home will be assisting your family.
List of Local Funeral Homes
After you have visited with the funeral home, you will be contacted by a St. Andrew’s funeral consultant. The funeral consultant will help you set a time to visit the church to review the liturgy plan that you have created using the readings and musical selections given on this webpage.
Please bring the completed Planning a Funeral Mass form to your meeting with the funeral consultant. If you do not have time to complete this form, please do not worry. We will help you choose readings and music during our visit with you.
Planning The Wake, Prayer Service and Eulogies
The Wake is a time for family and friends to gather and remember the deceased. It is usually held at the funeral home the evening before the funeral mass. St. Andrew’s Funeral Ministry will arrange to have a priest, a deacon, or a bereavement ministry volunteer come to the funeral home to lead a short prayer service.
All eulogies should follow the prayer service held at the funeral home. Eulogies are not given during the funeral mass. The prayer service during the Wake is also an appropriate time to play meaningful non-sacred music using a tape or CD players. Meaningful poetry can also be read following the prayer service.
Please consult with your funeral director after you have determined how much time you think you will need for the prayer service and eulogies. The funeral director will make sure you’ve planned enough visitation time for the evening.
Planning the Funeral Mass
- Music: St. Andrew is blessed with many gifted musicians willing to share their talents with your family during this difficult time. The music director will arrange for one cantor and a pianist to lead the music during the funeral mass.
- Liturgical Ministers: We will also provide you with a reader to proclaim the scriptures, an acolyte to assist the priest and a Eucharistic Minister.
- Family Members: Family members may participate during the mass by bringing the gifts forward during the offertory hymn.
- Planning Form: Fill out the Planning a Funeral Mass form as much as you are able using the information below:
At the Funeral Mass
The family will gather in the back of the church prior to the funeral mass. The casket will enter the main church and be sprinkled with holy water, draped in the pall, and a family cross can be placed on top of the casket. The family will follow the priest and the casket to the front of the church. Family members will be seated in the reserved pews in the front of the church. The mass will proceed as usual.
At the end of mass, the family will follow the priest and the casket to the back of the church. The pall will be removed and the casket will be sprinkled with holy water once more. The funeral directors will assist the family as they leave the church and prepare to depart for either the cemetery or the St. Andrew’s Columbarium.
An ossuary is available for families who are bringing cremated remains to the church for the funeral mass. The urn is placed in the ossuary before mass. The ossuary can also be carried by two pall bearers during the processions if the family wishes to use this option. Your funeral consultant will help you determine the best way to use the ossuary during your loved one’s funeral mass.
- If family or friends wish to give a gift to St. Andrew the Apostle Catholic Church in thanksgiving for the funeral mass or in memory of the deceased, our parish has a number of St. Andrew Donation Opportunities to choose from.
- St. Andrew the Apostle Catholic Church - Gifts given to this fund will be used toward the daily operating costs of our church. Please note "Gift of Thanksgiving" in the memo portion of your check.
- St. Andrew Music Ministry - Cantors and pianists are ach paid $75 for participating in a funeral liturgy. Gifts given to the Music Ministry will be used to pay the musicians. Please note "Music Ministry" in the memo portion of your check.
St. Andrew’s columbarium offers the option of a burial site near the church, a tradition originating in the early church. Please see our Columbarium page for more information.