Funerals at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
When Someone Dies
We are never prepared for the emotional shock and the many responsibilities that come when a loved one dies. The Church is here to help you through this time of grief by offering comfort through the Gospel of Jesus Christ which is, above all, a message of hope and resurrection. In addition, the community of St Paul’s Episcopal Church is here to help with the decisions, obligations, and religious services that are so important to the healing process.
Call the clergy
You are encouraged to call the clergy of St. Paul’s any time of day or night when a loved one has died. They will do their best to come to wherever you are to offer spiritual support and practical guidance. This can include prayer with the family, calling a mortician, deciding on the time and place for the funeral, and determining the details for cremation or burial.
There are three types of services for the departed:
- A funeral is the liturgy for the Burial of the Dead with the body present, either in a coffin or as ashes in an urn. It is usually held within a few days of the person’s death. It can be held in the church, graveside, or funeral home.
- A committal is a brief liturgy that usually follows the funeral directly at the place where the body or ashes are to be interred. It can also be a stand-alone event.
- A memorial service is a liturgy without either the body or ashes. It can be held from a few days up to a year or more after death.
Planning the Funeral
Funerals for church members are customarily held in the church. “Visiting hours” allow family and friends to gather before the funeral, and may be offered at church or the Funeral Home. It is increasingly common that visiting hours and funerals take place at the Funeral Home, but please consider St. Paul’s for these, as costs are lower and the location of St. Paul’s is sacred. Nevertheless, the clergy are happy to visit and offer prayers at Funeral Homes.