While it’s not always comfortable to think about your own passing, it can be very helpful to your family if you have pre-planned your funeral arrangements. Making decisions ahead of time can also ensure that your family knows your exact wishes.
Having a funeral home involved in the preparations and planning for a funeral, as well as being present for the service, is invaluable. They are able to handle many of the details that can often overwhelm those trying to plan arrangements.
Unfortunately, St. Francis Borgia cannot provide the same services as a funeral home and, for that reason, we would strongly encourage every family to work with a funeral home in preparation for a funeral.
While your selected funeral home will be able to assist with most aspects of your pre-planning, there are some materials that you may wish to obtain from the parish office to guide your plans, including the options for Scripture readings, intercessions and the roles for those participating in the liturgy. We can email those documents to you so they can be easily shared with other family members or you may stop by and get hard copies at the parish office.
Fr. Patrick encourages everyone to have a funeral Mass (a casket or urn is present) or if that is not possible, a memorial Mass (no body is present), rather than a service at the funeral home or simple prayers at the gravesite. The Mass provides grace that a simple prayer service cannot provide for the living but especially for the soul of the deceased.
It is also preferred that the burial or inurnment of ashes take place immediately after or as close as possible to the time of the funeral. Several years ago, The Vatican issued a statement regarding cremains which said that while a traditional burial is preferable, one can opt for cremation for legitimate motives. It also made clear that Catholics are forbidden from keeping the ashes of cremated loved ones at home, scattering them, dividing them between family members or turning them into mementoes. The reasons for this include: proper care for the dignity of the body, belief in the resurrection of the body, and avoidance of non-Christian practices. Ashes must be stored in a sacred place explicitly dedicated for that purpose, such as a cemetery, so that the deceased are remembered and prayed for by the Christian community.
Should you have questions about burial in beautiful St. Francis Borgia Cemetery, please contact Brian Willbrandt, cemetery coordinator, for assistance. You may email him or call the parish office (262-377-1070) to have a message relayed to Brian.