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Funeral Planning

Planning a Funeral Mass and/or a Committal Service for a loved one is a powerful experience as there is so much to process. That is why we are here to accompany you. If your loved one will have a funeral and/or committal service under the direction of the parish, please call the Funeral Ministry at 919-847-8205 x242 during office hours Monday-Friday 9:00am to 4:00pm.

If possible, when a loved one is approaching death, please contact the parish to let us know so we may provide spiritual and pastoral ministry to your loved one through a variety of ministries we offer. When a loved one passes, the first call you should make is to the funeral home. This is a list of local Funeral Homes St. Francis most frequently coordinates with – Click here

After you have made this call, please call the Funeral Ministry at 919-847-8205 x242 leave a message with information about your loved one and your contact information. A member of our team will be in touch within the next business day.

Funeral Planning Resources


To schedule a funeral, contact the St. Francis Funeral Ministry at 919-847-8205 x 242. A member of the parish staff will coordinate with your family, the priest, and the funeral home to select a date and time for the funeral liturgy.

Funeral Mass (or) Funeral Service

  • You may choose from two types of Funeral Liturgies:

    • Funeral Mass (includes Communion)
    • Funeral Service (similar to a Mass, but does not include Communion)


  • Funerals are offered in the Church or the Chapel at the following times (based on availability of the priest and worship space):

    • Tuesday – Friday (11am | 1pm | 3:30pm)
    • Saturday (11 am | 1pm)


    After the date and time of the liturgy have been confirmed, an Emmaus Minister will contact the family. Emmaus Minsters are volunteers who are trained to work with those who are grieving and help them during the time between a loved one’s death and the funeral liturgy. The family and Emmaus Minister will plan the liturgy together.

Planning Documents

Your family is invited to select the readings and music for the funeral liturgy. The Emmaus Minister will be happy to assist you. If you wish, you may use this Funeral Planning Sheet to make note of your selections.

Please use the following resources:

Funeral Readings
There are normally three scripture readings proclaimed at a funeral liturgy.

  • The First Reading:
    • During most of the liturgical year, the first reading is from the Old Testament – (Options)
    • During the Easter Season (Easter Sunday through Pentecost), the first reading is from the New Testament – (Options)
  • The Second Reading is from the New Testament – (Options) 
  • The Gospel is chosen from Matthew, Mark, Luke or John –(Options)

Funeral Music – Music is a powerful expression of faith and our Christian beliefs and an indispensable part of a funeral liturgy. To see a sampling of music options, click here.

You may have a favorite scripture passage or hymn that is not listed in the options. If so, your Emmaus Minister will discuss your choice with the priest and/or music minister to see if it would be appropriate.

Prayer of the Faithful

After the homily, we lift up our petitions to the Lord in the Prayer of the Faithful. At funerals, this prayer is specific to the person who has died. To view a typical Prayer of the Faithful for funerals, click here.

Words of Remembrance

Often a member of the family or friend wishes to share memories of their loved one at the funeral. These Words of Remembrance are offered near the end of the funeral liturgy. Please note the parish policy:

Clergy Information Sheet:

So that the priest or deacon is able to personalize his remarks at the funeral, we ask that you tell us about your loved one by completing the Clergy Information Sheet. The Emmaus Minister will assist you in completing this form. Please submit the Clergy Information Sheet at least 24 hours before the funeral liturgy.

Honorariums (Stipends)

It is customary to pay musicians for their ministry at funerals. Their fees are:

Accompanist: $250
Cantor: $125

If the family wishes to extend an offering to the clergy who officiate over the funeral rites, please consult with your funeral coordinator for further direction.

Live Streaming: When we are able to find a technician, we can offer a livestream of the funeral.

Livestream technician: $125


Payment is by cash or check. If a check is used, please make the check payable directly to the musicians and clergy, not St. Francis of Assisi. The Emmaus Minister will provide you with their names.

PLEASE NOTE: No one will be refused funeral services if financial circumstances make it difficult for you to pay the musicians stipend or offer the clergy an honorarium. Simply make this known to the Emmaus Minister.

Planning The Funeral Mass

Worship Aid

To assist in the dignity of the liturgy, we provide a worship aid designed by a staff member. If you would like a picture of your loved one on the front of the worship aid, please send it to

Liturgical Ministers

Family members and friends are encouraged to participate in the liturgy. They may serve in several roles, as readers, offertory gift bearers, or (if they have been trained), as Eucharistic Ministers. Your Emmaus Minister will review all of the available ministry roles with you. When needed, St. Francis volunteers are happy to assist in filling these roles.


You are welcome to hold a visitation at St. Francis for one hour prior to the start of the liturgy. For funerals held in the church, family and friends gather in the church parlor and gathering space (lobby). For funerals held in the chapel, family and friends gather in the chapel itself.

Rite of Committal in the Parish Columbarium

St. Francis of Assisi Columbarium is a place of faith, tender rest, and visitation. If you seek to lay your family member to rest in one of our niches, please inform us when you initially contact the parish at the time of death. If your loved one has previously purchased a niche, please make us aware of this.

Rite of Committal Elsewhere

If your loved one will be laid to rest in a cemetery, please inform us when you initially contact the parish at the time of death. A priest or deacon will provide a dignified service in the Catholic tradition. Our clergy will work with you and the cemetery to schedule the date and time.