Dear friends in Christ,
May the risen Lord bring you hope and consolation during this moment of loss and grief.
In the face of death, our Christian faith allows us to confidently proclaim that God created each person for eternal life. So that by his death and resurrection, Jesus has set us free from sin and death. This is our faith!
In helping prepare the funeral liturgies, you give witness to your faith in God and to your love for the deceased. As Christians, we “celebrate the funeral rites to offer worship, praise, and thanksgiving to God for the gift of a life which has now returned to God, the author of life and the hope of the just” (Order of Christian Funeral, 5). May your thoughtful and careful choice of the Scripture Readings and Selection of Music for Funerals be powerful means of remembering your beloved in how he/she lived his/her Christian faith. If Words of Remembrance are to be given, please be attentive to the Diocesan Guidelines for Word of Remembrance.
As Christians, our journey together continues even in death. In the funeral rites, when we trustingly commend the dead to God, we express our spiritual bond at three important moments: the Vigil or Wake, the Funeral Mass, and the Rite of Committal or Burial. May these times be for us special moments to pray for the dead, to comfort those who mourn, and to be strengthened in our Christian faith.
During this time, we turn to Jesus Christ and, in prayer, affirm that –
In him the hope of blessed resurrection has dawned,
that those saddened by the certainty of dying
might be consoled by the promise of immortality to come.
Indeed for your faithful, Lord,
life is changed not ended,
and, when this earthly dwelling turns to dust,
an eternal dwelling is made ready for them in heaven.
– Preface I For The Dead: The Hope in Resurrection in Christ
I assure you of my prayers and those of the faithful of Saint Patrick Church,
Father Edison Tayag