"For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who
believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life." John 3:16
In the face of death, the Church confidently proclaims that God has created each person for eternal life and that Jesus, the son of God, by His death and resurrection, has broken the chains of sin and death that bound humanity. This saving mystery is at the center of the Church's life.
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 the sacrament of the Eucharist. Christians celebrate these rites to offer worship, praise, and thanksgiving to God for the gift of a life which has now been returned to God, the author of life and the hope of the just.
"If one member suffers in the body of Christ which is the Church, all the members suffer with that member (1 Cor. 12:12)". The celebration of the Christian funeral brings hope and consolation to the living as the Christian community affirms and expresses the union of the Church on earth with the Church in heaven in the one great communion of saints. Though separated from the living, the dead are still at one with the community of believers on earth and benefit from their prayers and intercession.
Our planning guide (click here) is designed to help you and your family prepare the readings, songs, and use of Christian symbols in the liturgy which best reflects your prayer to God at the time of the death of one whom you love.