Funerals & Memorial Masses

“The Christian meaning of death is revealed in the light of the Paschal mystery of the death and resurrection of Christ in whom resides our only hope. The Christian who dies in Christ Jesus is ‘away from the body and at home with the Lord.’ For the Christian the day of death inaugurates, at the end of his sacramental life, the fulfillment of his new birth begun at Baptism, the definitive “conformity” to “the image of the Son” conferred by the anointing of the Holy Spirit, and participation in the feast of the Kingdom which was anticipated in the Eucharist – even if final purifications are still necessary for him in order to be clothed with the nuptial garment.”

(Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1681-1682)


A Celebration of Eternal Life

Saint William Catholic Church holds you and your family in prayer at this difficult time.  Please know that we are here to assist you with the planning of the funeral for your loved one.  We will help you make decisions concerning readings and music, and answer any questions you may have concerning the church, liturgy, and funeral preparations.

There are three types of Masses here at Saint William that are associated with the Rite of Christian Burial:

  • Mass of Christian Burial with the Body Present: The preferred practice among Catholics.

  • Mass of Christian Burial with the Ashes Present: Having the body present during the funeral, followed by cremation, is the preferred practice among Catholics.  If the body has already been cremated, the ashes are brought into the Church and are treated with the same dignity and respect as the body.  This is NOT considered a Memorial Mass.

  • Memorial Mass with No Body or Ashes Present: This Mass is usually celebrated when someone dies and is buried elsewhere.  The Memorial Mass is held so that family, friends, and the community may come together to pray for the deceased.

A member of the staff or the Bereavement Ministry Team will work with the family step-by-step, and will answer any questions.


Saint William Parish Office


Pre-Planning of the Funeral Liturgy 

Saint William Catholic Church also offers parishioners the opportunity to pre-plan their Funeral Mass.  This option allows you to witness your faith to your family and friends through your selection of readings and music.  Pre-planning is done by appointment with the Director of Music Ministry.  These preparations only include those for the Mass, and not other practical preparations such as burial or services handled by the funeral home.

The process includes one meeting with our director in which you receive an overview of the Funeral Mass and materials to help guide your selections of readings and music.  Generally, people then take time to consider which selections most accurately represent their faith and hope in the Resurrection.  If you choose, you may return the completed information form to our Director, who will keep it on file at the Church until needed.


Cynthia Dallas, Director of Music Ministry
239-465-4590 or email here.