Funerals

Christian funerals proclaim our hope in the resurrection, and Jesus Christ as first fruits from the dead.

A Christian Funeral is firmly grounded in the hope of the resurrection from the dead. Christian funerals are not a celebration of the life of the person who has died. They are a giving thanks to God for the life that he has first given, and an entrusting of that life back to God. Families come together to comfort one another, but most importantly to pray for their loved one who has died.

A Catholic funeral is a liturgy of the Catholic Church. As such, the funeral service itself must be in accordance with the Order of Christian Funerals.

For a baptised person, the most appropriate form of funeral liturgy is a Mass. This is because the celebration of Mass is the making present of the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is this action of Jesus which smashes the powers of death, and makes the resurrection possible for those who follow Jesus. A funeral Mass is offered with the specific intention that the fruits of the Mass be applied to the person who has died.
Sometimes there may be a very good Pastoral reason as to why a Liturgy of the Word is more appropriate. Our clergy can assist you in determining what is best in your circumstances.

To book a funeral, the first point of contact is the Funeral Director of your choice. The Funeral Director will then liaise with the Parish to confirm a time. One of our clergy will then contact you to arrange a meeting time to plan the funeral with you.

Frequently Asked Questions

Generally speaking, Catholic churches are only available for Catholic services. They are not venues and are not available for rent.

Yes. Families have the option of a traditional burial, or a cremation. If cremation is chosen, the ashes are to be laid to rest in a sacred place. (Eg, a columbarium) It is not permitted to retain ashes at home. It is absolutely prohibited to sprinkle ashes.

Whilst we understand that this can be confronting, we would strongly encourage you to attend the graveside or crematorium. The priest will accompany you, and complete the Liturgy of Christian Burial. It is at this moment that many families will find closure at the death of their loved one.

A Christian Funeral is a religious service, which has a specific purpose and structure. The Order of Christian Funerals has no allowance within the liturgy for such as presentation. As human beings, we do have a need to gather together and remember our loved ones, however this is very difficult to do in the context of the liturgy in the Church.

The Order of Christian Funerals assumes that the traditional wake will take place. This is the place where family members can come together in an informal and relaxed setting to remember and share stories about their loved one. For this reason, we strongly discourage the use of A/V or PowerPoint presentations during the Funeral Liturgy.

If you do decide to opt for an A/V Presentation, due to legal and liability constraints, we must insist upon the following:

  • Under copyright legislation, it is not permitted to embed a music track into an A/V presentation.
  • A separate music track (not embedded into the presentation) may be played at the same time as the resentation, however popular or rock music is not appropriate during the liturgy.
  • The final presentation must be supplied to the priest/deacon on a USB key at least three (3) days prior to the funeral. If the priest or deacon determines that there is anything inappropriate in the presentation, he may decline to show the presentation.
  • You will need to provide your own laptop.
  • Screens are available at St Therese’s, New Lambton, and St John the Evangelist, Lambton.
  • There are no A/V facilities at Corpus Christi, Waratah. It is not appropriate to set up portable screens in the church.
  • The slide-show presentation is to be operated by the Funeral Directors.
  • We take no responsibility for any technology failures during the funeral liturgy.

To avoid disappointment, please do not ask for exceptions

A Christian Funeral is a liturgy of the Church. For this reason, secular music is strongly discouraged. Christian Funerals are not about the deceased person’s favourite things. They are about entrusting your loved one who has died into God’s care.

A Christian Funeral is a liturgy of the Church. The readings during liturgy may only come from the bible. The priest or Deacon will help you select appropriate scriptural readings.

Yes. This is included in the fee from the Funeral Director. If one of our Parish Organists is used, an additional musician’s fee may also be charged.