Funeral Planning

But in all these things we overcome, because of him that hath loved us. For I am sure that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor might, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord

– Romans 8:37-39

Planning the funeral mass for your loved one

The Clergy and parish family of Sacred Heart assure you of our prayers and loving support during your time of sorrow.

The details of arranging funeral services may feel overwhelming. Know that the funeral director at the funeral home is your main contact and will coordinate all services and times for your family, contacting the Church on your behalf. Reach out to the Funeral Home and Director first.

As you go through this preparation, we encourage you to consider the following:

A Mass of Resurrection

We encourage all Catholics, through those planning their funeral services, to have a Mass said on the day of their burial with the body present at the Church. The Mass is the prayer Jesus gave us at the Last Supper and is His Sacrifice that atones for the sins of our loved one whose body we honor with Christian burial. Of all the services we could choose, for Catholics, this is the most important as we ask God to mercifully cleanse our loved one of sin and receive him or her into his heavenly kingdom. Masses of Resurrection are scheduled at Sacred Heart during theweekdays, not on weekends because there are often weddings and baptisms.

Cremation

Catholics may choose cremation. The Church encourages us to wait until after the Mass of Resurrection to do the cremation so that the body is present at the Church for this Mass. When choosing cremation, please plan to inter the cremains in a grave or columbarium when you receive them from the funeral home. It is important to honor the cremains with a final resting place rather than keeping them in our homes. This is also important for us who grieve the death of our loved one, giving us closure.

Vigil Service

We encourage parishioners to have an evening vigil service for family and friends who may not be able to attend during the day. While the traditional prayer offered at the vigil is the Rosary, there is an option for a Liturgy of the Word that is more comforting for those attending who are from different Christian denominations. You may choose to have the Liturgy of the Word followed by the praying of the Rosary.

Funeral Reception Meal

At Sacred Heart, we offer a meal after the burial of your loved one for immediate and extended family members – for approximately fifty people. Please let us know if you desire this. Please also note that during the pandemic this option may not always be available.

Planning the Mass of Resurrection

To make this celebration more personal, we invite you to choose the Scripture Readings and to suggest hymns for the Mass. Use these links on this page recommended by the Church. Choose four readings: one from Old Testament, one from Responsorial Psalms, one from New Testament, and one from the Gospel.

STEP 1: Provide Names of those Placing Pall

The pall is the white cloth that covers the casket during a Catholic funeral. The pall recalls the white garment worn by Catholic Christians at the time of one's baptism. It may be placed on the casket by family members or friends. A pall is not placed over cremated remains. Flags and other insignia may cover the casket before and after the liturgy. If the deceased has a personal bible and/or cross, family members or loved ones are invited to place these on the casket at the beginning of Mass.

STEP 2: Select the 1st & 2nd Readings / Provide Reader Names

The first step in planning a funeral is to choose the Scripture readings to be read as part of the Liturgy of the Word.

First Readings

  • A-1 / 2 Macc. 12:43-46 (Expiation for the Dead)
  • A-2 / Wisdom 3:1-6, 9 (Counsels of God on Suffering)
  • A-3 / Wisdom 4:7-15 (On Early Death
  • A-4 / Isaiah 25:6a, 7-9 (The Mountain of the Lord)
  • A-5 / Lam. 3:17-26 (It is Good to Hope in the Lord)
  • A-6 / Eccles. 3:1-8 (For Everything There is a Season)

Easter Season

  • AA-1 / Acts 10:34-36, 42-43 (Jesus Christ is Lord of All)
  • AA-2 / Revelation 14:13 (Blessed are the Dead who Die in the Lord)
  • AA-3 / Revelation 21:1-5a, 6b-7 (The New Heaven and the New Earth)

Second Readings

  • B-1 / Romans 5:5-11 (Hope Does Not Disappoint)
  • B-2  / Romans 6:3-4, 8-9 (Freedom from Sin; Life in God)
  • B-3 / Romans 8:14-23 (Children of God)
  • B-4 / Romans 8:31b-35, 37-39 (God’s Love in Christ)
  • B-5 / 1 Cor. 15:51-57 (Where, O Death, is your Victory?)
  • B-6 / Romans 14:7-9, 10c-12 (Live and Die for Christ)
  • B-7 / 2 Tim. 4:6-8 (I Have Fought the Good Fight)
  • B-8 / 2 Cor. 4:14-5:1 (Eternal Dwelling in Heaven)
  • B-9 / 2 Cor. 5:1, 6:10 (We Walk by Faith)
  • B-10 / 1 Thess. 4:13-18 (Hope for the Christian Dead)
  • B-11 / 2 Tim. 2:8-13 (If We Have Died with Him, We Shall Also Live with Him)
  • B-12 / 1 John 3:1-2 (The Love of the Father)
  • B-13 - Revelation 21: 1-5a, 6b-7 (Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end)

Using the Funeral Planning Form, you are asked to choose one option from Sections A and B and also provide the name of person who will be reading each reading.

Note: The parish could provide parishioners who could read in the event that there is no one from the family who would like to read.

STEP 3: Selecting the Gospel

The second step is to choose the Gospel reading which will be read by the priest.

Gospel Readings

  • C-1 / Matthew 5:1-12a (The Beatitudes)
  • C-2 / Matthew 11:25-30 (For My Yoke is Easy, and My Burden Light)
  • C-3 / Matthew 25:31-46 (Come, You Who are Blessed by My Father)
  • C-4 / Luke 7:11-17 (Raising of the Widow’s Son)
  • C-5 / Luke 24:13-16, 28-35 (The Road to Emmaus)
  • C-6 / John 6:37-40 (I Shall Raise Him on the Last Day)
  • C-7 / John 6:51-59 (The Bread of Life)
  • C-8 / John 11:21-27 (I Am the Resurrection and the Life)
  • C-9 / John 12:23-26 (Unless a Grain of Wheat Falls)
  • C-10 / John 14:1-6 (I Am the Way and the Truth and the Life)
STEP 4: Selecting The Prayers of the Faithful

Following the homily, a family member or friend may read the General Intercessions. Click on link to review and select one of the following options: 

Note: The presiding priest will read in the event that there is no one from the family who would like to read. 

STEP 5: Provide 2 names to bring The Gifts of Bread and Wine for The Eucharist

Bread and wine are brought to the altar for the celebration of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, which will be offered for the deceased. 

Words of Remembrance (Optional)

One family member or friend may speak briefly in remembrance of the deceased and his/her life of faith, virtue and good works.  The priest or deacon will introduce the person at the appropriate time. Families and friends are asked to preserve the sacred character of the Catholic Funeral, keeping in mind that the focus of a Catholic Funeral is Jesus Christ and the promise of eternal life. During the remarks, our praise should be directed toward God. 

Once the Funeral Planning Form is completed, it is reviewed with the Liturgy & Music Director. Please inform us if there will be any Military honors or Civic Groups present such as the Knights of Columbus, VFW or Lyons Club.

After you have made all of your selections, please fill out the planning form.

Mass Intention

Rather than scheduling a private Memorial Mass, we encourage you to reserve a Mass Intention at the parish office and invite family and friends to attend. This allows others from the parish who attend daily or weekend masses to be present to pray with you and for the soul of your loved one.

First Anniversary – One Year Mass Intention

Again, instead of a private Mass, we encourage you to reserve a Mass Intention for your loved one on the date of the one-year anniversary of the death, or a date close to that one at which you and other family and friends may attend. This allows others in the parish family to be in prayer with you at this sacred time.

Bereavement Support Groups

We encourage you to consider journeying with others who have also experienced the death of a loved one. Currently, we offer groups in English or Spanish and there is a special group available for parents who have experienced the death of a child. Contact: Linda Galanos atlgalanos@consolidated.netor call(936) 525-8738

Individual and Family Counseling

As you experience grief, there are many emotions and sometimes you may feel overwhelmed. We invite you to consider talking with a Catholic Counselor at Gratia Plena. Their contact information is(832) 532-0129andwww.gratiaplenacounseling.org.

Does the Church recommend a Funeral Mass?

Yes, a celebration of the Mass is strongly encouraged for any Catholic who has died, even though the family may not be Catholic. On days when a Funeral Mass is not permitted, a prayer service is celebrated (for example, Funeral Masses are not scheduled on Sundays, Holy Days of Obligation, Holy Thursday, Good Friday, or Holy Saturday).

Can I choose the Scripture readings or does the Church choose them?
The family is encouraged to select the readings from Sacred Scripture. Click here for a selection of possible Old Testament, New Testament, and Gospel readings.
Can I choose the hymns for the Vigil Service and/or the Mass?

The family is encouraged to meet with someone from the worship office to help plan the music. Please be aware that there are a fixed number of liturgical texts at a funeral Mass, which affect what may be sung. Also note that recorded music or secular music cannot be used at Mass. A parish cantor will sing for the funeral. A list of many appropriate and commonly chosen hymns may be found by clicking here.

Can we have a reception after the funeral?

Depending on minister and room availability, we may offer a reception for immediate family, serving up to 50 of your guests.

If there is no visitation the evening before, can we have visitation one hour before the funeral?

With prior permission, the visitation can take place one hour prior to the funeral in the Narthex.

Can I have friends and family members offer a eulogy?

Yes, after communion a eulogy may be given for no longer than 3-5 minutes.

Does the Catholic Church allow cremation?

Yes, the Church permits cremation [CCC2301], but the Church still prefers burial or entombment of the deceased. Click here for a more detailed explanation.

Does the church charge for funerals?

There is no charge to use the church for a funeral or the parish hall for a meal after the funeral.

Can I bring flowers into the church?

Flowers may be brought into the vestibule of the church, but normally not into the nave and sanctuary of the church (with the exception of the casket spray or a small vase of flowers next to the cremains).

May I request a priest from another parish celebrate my funeral?

Yes, visiting priests are welcome at Sacred Heart.

Can we have a reception after the funeral?

Depending on minister and room availability, the goal of our Funeral Meal Ministry is to provide families with a light reception after the service at no charge. Please consult with the Parish Office for availability. 

Will there be a program for the service?

Yes, a worship aid will be printed for the service.

Seek and You Shall Find

Mass Times

Sunday
7:30 AM
English (Organ/Cantor)

10:00 AM
English (Traditional/Contemporary)
Live Stream

12:30 PM
Spanish
(Traditional/Contemporary)
Live Stream

3:00 PM
Spanish (Contemporary)

5:30 PM
English (Contemporary)
Live Stream

Saturday

8:00 AM
English

5:00 PM
English (Organ/Choir)
Live Stream

7:00 PM
Spanish (Traditional)

First Saturday

9:30 am
English

Daily Masses
Monday - Thursday

7:00 am
English (with Lauds)
Live Stream

12:10 pm
English

6:00 pm
Spanish
Live Stream

Friday

7:00 am
English (with Lauds)
Live Stream

8:30 am
English (School Mass)
Live Stream

First Friday

7:30 pm
Bilingual (English & Spanish)

 

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