Planning Funeral Rites

“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.” Order of Christian Funerals, #4.

When a family member passes away, the first step is to contact the funeral home of your choice. The next step is to contact our pastor, Fr. Rob Cole, to schedule a time to come to the office to arrange a date and time for the funeral Mass.

Immediate family will meet with Fr. Rob, who will guide them through the selection of Church-approved readings and sacred music. Family will be given the choice of choosing their own readers or having members of our Funeral Team proclaim the Old and New Testament readings. Offertory gift bearers may also be selected.

The funeral Mass is held at the church with either the loved one’s body or cremated remains present. At the entrance to the church, the casket is sprinkled with holy water and covered with a pall, a reminder of baptism. When the procession reaches the front of the church, a symbol of Christian faith, such as a Bible or Crucifix, may be placed on the casket.

An urn of cremated remains will be placed on a table at the front of the church before the Mass begins.

After the Commendation and Farewell when the remains are honored with incense and the pall is removed, the service may continue at a cemetery for interment of a casket or committal of cremated remains.



Funerals are a special ministry of the Church and one where we meet families at defining moments of faith. No one will be denied the services of the Church for financial reasons; if the fees are burdensome, please speak with the priest. The funeral fee at St. John the Apostle is $300.00, which covers musicians, altar server, and use of the church. The fee may be paid through the funeral home or by a family member. It should be paid on or before the day of the funeral.


Individual tributes should be reserved for the wake service prior to the funeral Mass or for a reception following. Eulogies at Mass are not permitted.


We welcome displays of photographs and memorabilia in the church commons.


Flower arrangements may be displayed in the commons only and should be removed after the funeral.


We have a ministry dedicated to providing parish hospitality for bereaved family and friends by hosting a reception following Mass or interment. There is no charge for the services of this ministry, although donations are always welcome. Food and beverages are served, so the family need not worry about the needs of their guests. Please discuss this option with Fr. Rob during the funeral planning meeting.

Eternal rest grant unto them,

O Lord, and may perpetual light

Shine upon them,

May they rest in peace. Amen.

Please contact for more information or call 757-426-2180

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