Bereavment & Funerals

"Blessed are they who mourn; they shall be consoled" Mt. 5:3

When Someone is Sick or Dying

Please notify the parish office when one of our parishioners has been hospitalized so that we can pray for their needs and if desired, a priest can come to administer the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick. All Austin hospitals provide pastoral care for the spiritual needs of their patients. In emergencies when the parish priest is not available, the hospital will assist in contacting a priest for the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick.  

If appropriate, the sick person, and/or the family, may want to invite a parish staff person to help pre-plan the funeral liturgy. This can be a very healing and loving experience.

"So too when a member of Christ's Body dies, the faithful are called to a ministry of consolation to those who have suffered the loss of one whom they love. "   (from the Order of Christian Funerals)

When Someone has Died

Please notify the church as soon as possible. Our parish would like to reach out to you and to your family. Our parish will assist you in planning a beautiful Christian funeral and burial. We will work with the funeral home and your family in setting up dates and times for the funeral Rites. Our parish Bereavement ministry will provide a meal for family and friends following the funeral liturgy if requested. The parish contact person for all funeral arrangements is Sue Stremel, Director of Liturgy.

We also offer Grief Support groups to help who have suffered the loss of a loved one through this difficult time in their lives.

How You Can be of Help in the Bereavement Ministry

The primary mission of the Bereavement ministry is to offer compassion and support through the serving of a meal following the funeral Mass to those who grieve a loved one.

 

Members of this committee serve in a variety of ways, such as providing food for the meal, telephoning for donations, or preparing, serving, and cleaning up after the meal. Teams of 4 to 6 people are called upon to serve at each funeral. Due to the brief period of time between a death and the funeral Mass, people in this ministry should be prepared to serve on short notice. The number of deaths in a year's time determines how often people will serve, but generally, teams serve approximately 8-10 times per year.  Details of our volunteer opportunities are as follows:

Team Leaders: Team Leaders are responsible for coordinating the Bereavement meals. They contact the calling team, put together a team from the list of volunteers, purchase non-donated food items, and oversee the preparation, serving and clean up of the meal.  Team Leaders should have at least a year of experience in this Ministry.  

Phone Callers: Names and phone numbers of willing parishioners are provided to the phone callers who request food donations for the meals.  

Donating Food: If you would like to contribute towards the meal, your name will be placed on a rotating schedule.

Cooking/Baking: Some items are prepared at home and brought to the church the day of the funeral. Sometimes meals are prepared either in Brennan Auditorium or the PAC the day of the funeral using donated ingredients.

Set-up & Serving the Meal: Prior to the meal, tables are decorated and serving stations set up. Following the Funeral Mass, the Meal is served to the family and friends of the deceased.

Clean Up: After the guests leave, everything must be cleaned and put away.

Support Group: As we carefully expand our grief support network, we will need additional facilitators who have experienced loss in their own lives and can help others through their grieving.

If you would like to become a part of our much appreciated Bereavement Ministry, please contact Sue Stremel, Director of Liturgy.