On behalf of the Catholic Community of Resurrection and St. Joseph, I would like to offer our condolences to families and friends of the deceased. We are here to support one another in our times of difficulty and loss. Our shared Catholic faith offers us the proper context in which to understand the reality of death, namely, as it relates to the merits of our Savior Jesus Christ and His promise of salvation.
The funeral liturgy, established by the Church centuries ago, utilizes certain signs, symbols, and rituals that effectively communicate this faith to us. In this way, the funeral liturgy guides us through the spiritual, physical, and emotional journey of grieving for our beloved dead. A Catholic funeral is therefore not the personal prayer of the deceased or of the family of the deceased, it is an official, public prayer of the universal Church. In order to help facilitate the funeral celebration of your loved one, please see the following Diocesan Funeral Guidelines. It is also my practice to offer the family the option of choosing the readings to be read at the funeral service. Below are some suggested readings from Sacred Scripture. If this were to become an added burden for the family, for whatever reason, I am happy to choose the readings myself.
For those looking for guidance on end-of-life care in accordance with Catholic ethical principles, see the attached documents from the MN Catholic Conference.
Finally, you will also find below a recent Vatican decree concerning the practice of cremation. Note especially the highlighted sections regarding the care for cremated remains.
Grace & Peace,
Fr. Michael Garry
Diocese of Duluth
Suggested Funeral Readings
MN Catholic Health Care Directives
End-of-Life Care Decisions Guide
Vatican Guidelines on Cremation