Funeral Liturgy Planning
The celebration of a Christian funeral brings hope and consolation to those that are grieving.
Here are some of the choices you’ll be invited to make for your loved one’s Funeral Liturgy:
The Word of God
In every celebration for the dead, the Church attaches great importance to the reading of the Word of God. The readings proclaim to the assembly the paschal mystery, teach remembrance of the dead, convey the hope of being gathered together again in God’s Kingdom, and encourage the witness of Christian life.
Suggested Funeral Readings
The following are lists of Scriptures appropriate for use at Catholic Funeral Liturgies. One reading is chosen from each: the Old Testament, the New Testament, and the Gospels. (Other Scripture passages may be used with approval.)
Genesis 9:8-17“…This is the sign of the covenant I have established…”
2 Maccabees 12:43-46 "...he made atonement for the dead..."
Job 19: 1, 23-27 "...I know that my vindicator lives...."
Proverbs 31:10-12,15,20,25-26,28-31 “…the woman who fears the Lord is to be praised…”
Ecclesiastes 3:1-15 "...A time to be born, a time to die..."
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 "...A time to be born, a time to die..."
Wisdom 3:1-9 "...The souls of the just are in the hand of God..."
Wisdom 3:1-6,9 "...The souls of the just are in the hand of God..."
Wisdom 4:7-14 "The Righteous One, though he die early, shall be at rest..."
Sirach 2:1-11 "...in fire gold is tested....Compassionate is the Lord..."
Isaiah 25:6a, 7-9 "...he will destroy death forever..."
Isaiah 26:7-19 "...your dead shall live, their corpses shall rise..."
Isaiah 35:1-10 "...Here is your God, he comes with vindication..."
Isaiah 40:1-11 "...Here is your God, Here comes with power..."
Jeremiah 29:11-13 “…I know well the plans I have in mind for you…”
Lamentations 3:17-26 "...My portion is the Lord, says my soul..."
Ezekiel 34:11-16 “…I myself will search for my sheep…”
Ezekiel 37:12-14 "O my people, I will open your graves and have you rise..."
Daniel 12:1-3 "...the wise shall shine brightly..."
Micah 7:7-9 "...though I sit in darkness, the Lord is my light..."
Acts of the Apostles 10:34-43 "Everyone who believes in him will receive forgiveness of sins"
Acts of the Apostles 10:34-36,42-43 "Everyone who believes in him will receive forgiveness of sins"
Romans 5:1,5-11 "...We were reconciled to God through the death of his Son..."
Romans 5:17-21 "...through one righteous act acquittal and life came to all..."
Romans 6:3-9 "...if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall live with him..."
Romans 6:3-4,8-9 "...if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall live with him..."
Romans 8:1-11 "There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ..."
Romans 8:14-23 "Those who are led by the Spirit of God are Children of God"
Romans 8:31-35,37-39 "If God is for us, who can be against us?"
Romans 14:7-9,10-12 "This is why Christ died and came to life"
1 Corinthians 2:6-10 "Eye has not seen, and ear has not heard..."
1 Corinthians 15:12-20 "If there is no resurrection of the dead..."
1 Corinthians 15:20-28 "In Adam all die, so too if Christ shall all be brought to life.
1 Corinthians 15:51-57 "Death where is your victory?"
2 Corinthians 4:14-5:1 "The one who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us..."
2 Corinthians 5:1,6-10 "We would rather leave the body and go home..."
Philippians 3:7-14 "...I run toward the prize to which God calls me..."
Philippians 3:20-21 "He will change our lowly body..."
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 "If we believe that Jesus died and rose..."
2 Timothy 2:8-13 "Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead..."
2 Timothy 4:1-2,6-8 "I have competed well, I have finished the race..."
1 John 3:1-2 "Beloved, we are God's children now..."
1 John 3:14-16 "We know that we have passed from death to life..."
Revelation 14:13 "...Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord..."
Revelation 20:11-12:1 "...The sea gave up its dead; then Death and Hades..."
Revelation 21:1-5a,6b-7 "...I also saw the holy city, a new Jerusalem..."
Matthew 5:1-12a "The Eight Beatitudes"
Matthew 11:25-30 "Come to me . . . and I will give you rest."
Matthew 25:1-13 "Look. The bridegroom comes. Go out to meet him"
Matthew 25:31-46 "Come, you whom my Father has blessed"
Mark 15:33-39 "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
Mark 15:33 --16:6 "Jesus gave a loud cry and breathed his last"
Luke 7:11-17 "Young man, I say to you, arise."
Luke 12:35-40 "Be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect,..."
Luke 23:33, 39-43 "Today you will be with me in paradise."
Luke 23:44--24:6a "Father, I put my life in your hands."
Luke 23:44-49 "Father into your hands I commend my spirit"
Luke 24:13-35 "Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer..."
Luke 24:13-16,28-35 "Were not our hearts burning within us..."
John 5:24-29 "Whoever hears my word and believes has passed from..."
John 6:37-40 "All who believe in the Son will have eternal life..."
John 6:51-58 "All who eat this bread will live forever...."
John 11:17-27 "I am the resurrection and the life."
John 11:21-27 "I am the resurrection and the life."
John 11:32-45 "Lazarus, come out."
John 12:23-28 "If a grain of wheat falls on the ground and dies..."
John 12:23-26 "If a grain of wheat falls on the ground and dies..."
John 14:1-6 "There are many rooms in my Father's house."
John 17:24-26 "Father, I want those you have given me to be with me..."
Music is integral to the funeral rites. The music at funerals should support, console and uplift the participants and should help to create in them a spirit of hope in Christ’s victory over death and in the Christian’s share in that victory.
We encourage families to select the music for the funeral liturgy with the assistance of the funeral coordinator. Music selections for the funeral Mass should be suitable to the sacred nature of the funeral service. St. Odilia musicians will provide music for all funerals. If a family requests, additional soloists or instrumentalists may be added.
Suggested Music Selections
Ps. 121 Our Help Comes from the Lord
PREPARATION OF GIFTS
Children of the Light
How Great Thou Art
ADDITIONAL MUSIC FOR PRELUDE, POST-COMMUNION, OR PREPARATION OF GIFTS
FINAL COMMENDATION SONGS
We encourage family members or friends to fill these roles:
Readers (Old Testament, New Testament, Prayers of the Faithful)
We suggest choosing someone who is familiar with the Catholic Mass that can proclaim clearly and is comfortable in front of large groups of people. Be sure to give them a copy of the reading in advance. On arrival, the funeral assistant will acquaint the readers with the use of our microphones.
Two or more people carry the bread and wine, and additional items if desired, for the Preparation of Gifts.
Communion Cup Servers
Eucharist will be offered under both species. St. Odilia communion ministers are available unless the family has communion ministers who wish to serve. Be sure to notify the funeral coordinator. They must be Catholic and trained and commissioned from their home parish.
One family member is welcome to share Words of Remembrance following communion, with a suggested 3-5 minute maximum. If additional eulogizing is desired, we suggest this be done either at the wake service at the funeral home, or in the courtyard during the funeral luncheon.
Rite of Committal
Burial is scheduled according to the requirements of the cemetery chosen by the family. The preferred time for burial is following the funeral liturgy or the luncheon, in which case a priest will accompany the family to the cemetery for the Rite of Committal. This rite does not require a priest and may also be done by a deacon or layperson. If burial is delayed (i.e. due to cremation following the funeral), please contact the parish for pastoral presence when the burial is scheduled.