To bury the dead is a corporal work of mercy.  We are very pleased to hold a Mass of Christian Burial for your loved ones.  All funerals must be booked through the funeral home. Although not necessary, the family may take part in planning the funeral. This guide contains the policy for funeral liturgies at Holy Ghost Church.

You may download our Funeral Preparation Guide here.

The Readings

The Mass of Christian Burial usually consists of two readings, one from the Old Testament and the second from the New Testament.   This booklet contains all the readings approved for a Catholic Funeral.   The priest will choose the Gospel.   Other readings may not be substituted for the ones in this booklet.

The first reading is taken from the Old Testament (Section 1011/1 – 1011/7), except for during the Easter Season thru to Pentecost, when the first reading is taken from Section 1012/1 – 1012/4.

The second reading is taken from the New Testament (Section 1014/1 – 1014/15).

If a member of the family or a friend would like to read, they should be capable of proclaiming the Word of God properly and with dignity. The designated reader should be given a copy of the reading so they may prepare beforehand.

Please fax or eMail us your choice of readings the day before so that the priest can prepare the readings and we can place a copy of the readings on the pulpit the morning of the funeral.


The family may also give song requests for the Mass. However, the songs may only be from the collection of approved Sacred music. Secular music is never allowed during the Liturgy. If the family has song requests, please contact the parish music director or the Parish Office. (Please see the list of hymns below). Note: Song requests do not have to be honored!


In 1989 the Vatican published the revised Order of Christian Funerals (OCF) for the United States. The long-standing prohibition of eulogies at Catholic funerals was again upheld and restated. “A brief homily based on the readings should always be given at the funeral liturgy, but never any kind of eulogy.” [OCF # 141] In the revised General Instruction of the Roman Missal promulgated by John Paul II in year 2000 (GIRM 2000), this prohibition of eulogies was again restated: “At the Funeral Mass there should, as a rule, be a short homily, but never a eulogy of any kind.” This is the policy of Holy Ghost. Eulogies may not be given in the church. There will be NO exceptions to this policy.

If you wish to have a eulogy we offer the following suggestions. The calling hours (wake) give the opportunity to place a specific time in the news obituary so that family and friends who would like to be present may do so. Following the prayers at the cemetery is also another good time to share stories before leaving the body. And finally, most families hold a reception after leaving the cemetery. This is a great opportunity, not only for a eulogy, but for everyone present to be given a chance to share their personal stories about the deceased.

If we can be of any help in preparing the funeral Liturgy or in any other way, please do not hesitate to contact the parish office. And know that you and your loved ones will remain in our prayers. May our Lord give you His strength and consolation in this time of sadness.

Also see: “Let’s Bury The Eulogies” By Bishop Thomas J. Tobin

Music for the Funeral Mass

( Some hymns will appear several times, since they are appropriate for different parts of the Mass.)

Entrance Hymns:

  • Requiem Aeternam (This is standard and will not change)

Responsorial Psalms: (The psalm may not be replaced with a hymn)

  • “The Lord is my Shepherd, there is nothing I shall want.”
  • “The Lord is Kind and merciful.”

Offertory Hymns:

  • Ave Maria
  • Be Thou My Vision
  • I Heard the Voice of Jesus
  • I Sought the Lord
  • My Soul is Longing for Your Peace
  • O Breath on Me, O Breath of God
  • The King of Love My Shepherd Is
  • When I Survey the Wondrous Cross ( during the Lenten Season only)
  • Where Charity and Love Prevail
  • Yes, I Shall Arise

Communion Hymns:

  • Adoro Te Devote
  • Ave Verum Corpus (chant)
  • Alleluia! Sing to Jesus (not during the Lenten Season)
  • Be Thou My Vision
  • I Heard the Voice of Jesus
  • Jesus, My Lord, My God, My All
  • Lux Aeterna
  • O Food of Exiles Lowly
  • O Lord I Am Not Worthy
  • O Sacrament Most Holy
  • Panis Angelicus
  • Shepherd of Souls
  • Soul of My Savior
  • When I Survey the Wondrous Cross (during the Lenten Season)

Hymn of Final Commendation:

  • In Paradisum (This is standard and will not change)

Recessional Hymn:

  • Alleluia!  Sing to Jesus (not during the Lenten Season)
  • Be Thou My Vision
  • For All the Saints
  • In Paradisum
  • Lord of All Hopefulness
  • O God Beyond All Praising
  • O God Our Help in Ages Past
  • The Strife is O’er (during Eastertide)
  • Ye Watchers and Ye Holy Ones (not during Lenten Season)