When a loved one dies, we face a challenge that can seem impossible. We have to find a way to properly celebrate God’s gift of their life while, at the same time, we begin to mourn the hole that their passing has left inside of us. We must attend to both tasks. If we fail to grieve, we open ourselves to a huge set of complications down the road. If we don’t delight in their life, we miss an opportunity that won’t come again.

There is no better way to accomplish these tasks than with a Catholic funeral. The dignity and beauty of a funeral Mass helps us grieve and celebrate simultaneously. Many people who attend a funeral in a Catholic Church comment on the stunningly beauty of Catholic funeral rites. Christian hope does not take the sting out of death, but it places it within a
much larger panorama and allows us to celebrate the transition to eternity.

The best time to make plans for a funeral is before a loved one dies or becomes seriously ill. This allows us to have frank conversations about our deepest values and calmly prepare the services that will accompany a death. We hope this information will help you have those
conversations and think more deeply about your fondest hopes for your funeral or the funeral for someone you love.


Who is eligible to have a funeral at St. Mary’s?
Any baptized Catholic may have a Catholic funeral. Dates and times are subject to availability, but we work hard to accommodate funerals as a top priority.

Do we need to be parishioners of St. Mary’s to have a funeral here?
It is not required to be a St. Mary’s parishioner, but it is appropriate to have a good reason for choosing St. Mary’s over your home parish. When availability is limited, priority is given to registered parishioners.

Who is the first person a family should contact when a loved one passes?
Your family should first contact the preferred funeral home where you wish to make your arrangements. The funeral director will contact the parish once he/she knows your wishes.

Will my funeral be a Mass or a service?
It is your choice to have a funeral Mass or a service. If you have questions about which would be more appropriate, please let us know. A Mass always involves the distribution of the Body and Blood of Christ and is always celebrated by a priest. Services can be led by Deacons.

Where should I keep my funeral arrangements on record?
If you pre-plan your funeral with a funeral home, they will have a copy of your arrangements. They will also give you a copy that should be stored in a secure place that is known to at least two people that are close to you.

What does it cost to get buried at St. Mary’s?
The family is responsible for paying the music director ($150) and the church utilities fee ($100) which covers heating and cooling expenses. Many people also chose to give the priest or deacon an honorarium, but that is at their discretion and is not expected. All fees are generally collected by the funeral home and distributed accordingly. Because fees are subject to change over time, contact your funeral director for exact amounts.

Can I plan my funeral Mass ahead of time?
Yes. We have a resource book that you may use and a template to fill out with your choices. Your funeral Mass wishes should be kept in the same location as a funeral plan so that your loved ones can find it easily after you pass. St. Mary’s unfortunately lacks the storage needed to keep everyone’s plans on file in our office. See Funeral Music Suggestions

Should I purchase a plot ahead of time? Where do I go to do that?
Generally, the more preparation you do before passing, the easier it is for those left behind. Contact Michaela, our Business and Operations Manager at the Parish office to purchase your plot.

Can I have a funeral at St. Mary’s and burial at a different cemetery?
Yes, you may.

Can a Catholic be cremated? If they can, is it still possible to have a funeral at St. Mary’s?
A Catholic may indeed may be cremated. This in no way disqualifies someone from a Catholic
funeral and burial. Because the funeral rituals with a casket are especially beautiful, many
people chose to have their remains cremated after the funeral service rather than before. A
funeral director can help you make that decision.

Please spend some time with the information available and have those conversations. Then, reach out to your preferred funeral director to do some planning. You can always phone us with questions at 731-8800.