Sunday School: Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time
Oct06

Sunday School: Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sunday School To print or view the Sunday School page, click on the link below: Sunday School-27th Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle...

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From the Rector: Funerals-Part III
Oct06

From the Rector: Funerals-Part III

Funerals: Part III of the Series The Order of Christian Funerals is the book which contains all the prayers, rituals, readings, and instructions approved for use in the Dioceses of the United States for carrying out Catholic Funeral Rites.  As mentioned in the first Part of this series, there are three Major parts of the Funeral Rites. 1.) Vigil for the deceased, 2.) The Funeral Liturgy itself, (Mass) and 3.) the Rite of Committal. The Vigil.   The Vigil and Related Rites and Prayers include the rites that may be celebrated between the time of death and the funeral liturgy.  The Vigil is the principal celebration of the Christian community during the time before the funeral liturgy.  It may take the form of a liturgy of the Word or of some part of the Office for the Dead (the Liturgy of the Hours). Two vigil services are provided in the Ritual book, the Vigil for the Deceased, and the Vigil for the deceased with Reception (of the body) at the Church. The Vigil may be celebrated in the home of the deceased, in the funeral home chapel, or some other suitable place.  It may also be celebrated in the Church, but at a time well before the funeral liturgy, so that the funeral liturgy will not be too lengthy. The Vigil in the form of the Liturgy of the Word consists of the introductory rites, the readings, the prayer of intercession, the Lord’s prayer and a concluding rite.  At the vigil, a member of the family or a friend of the deceased may speak in remembrance of the deceased.  Also, at the Vigil sacred songs appropriate to the occasion may be sung as an entrance and at the closing. Music for Catholic worship should always originate from the voices of the actual participants, and not the playing of recorded sound, while recordings that are especially meaningful to the family may of course be used outside the liturgy itself at public receptions or private gatherings of the family and friends. Where it is the local custom to pray the Rosary for the deceased person, this might be prayed after the Vigil. If the Vigil includes the reception of the body at the Church, then this ritual is not repeated at the beginning of the Funeral Liturgy. If the Vigil takes the form of the Office of the Dead it may be celebrated either as Morning Prayer (Lauds)  or Evening Prayer (Vespers).  This office should be sung whenever possible. The Liturgy of the Hours consists of three Psalms, a reading, intercessions, the Lord’s prayer and concluding prayer. According to local custom, the Rosary might follow this Office. If a viewing of the body...

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Sunday School: Twenty-Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Sep29

Sunday School: Twenty-Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sunday School To print or view the Sunday School page, click on the link below: Sunday School 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle...

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From the Rector: Funerals-Part II
Sep29

From the Rector: Funerals-Part II

Funerals: Part II of the Series In last week’s column we addressed the process of beginning the arrangements for the Funeral after the death of a loved one.  A very common question that often arises at this point is if the persons will be buried bodily, or if they will be cremated before burial, and what instruction the Church gives in regard to these questions. Questions about the presence of the body at the Funeral Mass It has always been the preference of the Church that the body of the deceased person be present at the Funeral Mass.  In fact, there is a different form of the Liturgy if the body is absent, and a slightly modified form if the cremated remains are present. There are several reasons for this tradition, the first and most important is the correspondence of our death to the death and burial of Our Lord Jesus.  He was taken down from the cross, and his body was laid in the tomb from which he rose again on Easter Morning.  In imitation of him we are placed in the grave, awaiting the day of the Resurrection. In times past, there was a concern on the part of the Church, when in certain cultures this correspondence was being called into question, or was being denied by the cremation of the body. In particular,  where there was an intention to scatter the ashes rather than to bury them, therefore, there was a very long period when Catholic burial was not granted to a person whose bodily remains were intentionally cremated.  Over time that tension has been resolved, and in our time, cremation is generally performed for economic  and not ideological considerations. In light of this development, the pastoral practice of the Church does permit the burial of the cremated remains now, however, there remains a preference for the cremation to take place after the funeral when possible. This is not an absolute requirement, but a preference.  What has not changed is the insistence that the cremated remains be treated with the same dignity as the bodily remains.  Namely, that the cremated remains are to be buried promptly in a grave or mausoleum and are not to be kept indefinitely or scattered. The ceremony for the interment of the cremated remains at the cemetery is virtually the same as for the body present in a casket.  The ground is blessed where the person is laid to rest, and therefore the grave becomes a sign of hope as the place from which our loved one will rise again from the dead when Jesus comes in Glory.  A grave site...

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Sunday School: Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Sep22

Sunday School: Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sunday School To print or view the Sunday School page, click on the link below: Sunday School 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle...

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From the Rector: Funerals: Part I
Sep22

From the Rector: Funerals: Part I

Funerals: Part 1 of the Series Whenever one of us experiences the loss of a loved one, we are faced with having to make a lot of decisions concerning family issues, financial questions, sometimes legal and property management  issues.  In the midst of the tremendous sorrow we are also faced with trying to plan arrangements for the funeral.  In our distress we turn to the Lord to look for comfort and place our trust in His Goodness and Love for us. In order to try to make this process less stressful we will be presenting a series of articles to help spell out what goes into the preparation should the need arise. The Church’s three part liturgy.   The Funeral Rites of the Church consist of the 1.) Vigil for the deceased, 2.) The Funeral Liturgy itself, and 3.) the Rite of Committal.  Additionally the Office for the Dead, which we also refer to as the Liturgy of the hours, may also be prayed for the deceased person.  The Church “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 the funeral 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.  The Mass, the memorial of Christ’s death and Resurrection is the principal celebration of the Christian funeral.  The Celebration of the Christian funeral brings hope and consolation to the living.  While proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ and witnessing to Christian hope in the resurrection, the funeral rites also recall to all who take part in them God’s mercy and judgment and meet the human need to turn always to God in times of Crisis.” (From the Order of Christian Funerals). At the time of the death of a loved one. If it so happens that there is some warning that your loved one is in danger of death, please don’t hesitate to call for a priest.  It is a tremendous blessing to receive the Sacraments and be strengthened spiritually in preparation for death.  But, even if the person dies suddenly it is a good practice to notify the parish priest who can come and pray with the family if possible. In the days following. Once a mortuary has been selected and meeting with the funeral director has been arranged, a call to the parish secretary is the best way to find out when the church building is available and when a priest or deacon is available for the funeral...

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Sunday School: Twenty-Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Sep15

Sunday School: Twenty-Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sunday School To print or view the Sunday School page, click on the link below: Sunday School 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle A...

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