In these times of restrictions on gatherings and the closure of places of worship, how we celebrate the Funeral Rites will vary depending on the circumstances. The priority is to allow for the dignified burial of our deceased loved ones, while at the same time, protecting all concerned from the increased risk of infection of Coronavirus (Covid-19).
The traditional wake service should not take place, as it encourages visitors to the home of the deceased and risks the spread of infection. The Wake House should be advertised as ‘Private’.
The Priest, without visiting the wake, will engage pastorally with the family and make arrangements for the Funeral and Burial by telephone.
A booklet on preparing for the Funeral Mass is available from Long Tower Parish
A Prayer Service which can be led by a family member at the Wake House is available from Long Tower Parish
If it is possible to have a Funeral Mass, this will be celebrated in the presence of the immediate family only. Arrangements will be made to livestream the Funeral Mass online. Social distancing guidelines will need to be adhered to by all present in the Church.
Depending on Public Health Guidelines, funerals may need to take place quickly after the death and/or without a Church Service. If this is the case, the burial rites at the graveside may be the best that can be offered, with a funeral Mass taking place at another time.
These guidelines are subject to change at short notice.
Please be assured of the prayers of the priests of the parish, especially in this most unprecedented and difficult time.
Fr Aidan Mullan