Divine Worship
66 Brooks Drive
Braintree, MA 02184-3839


Thomas Lyman
Coordinator of Divine Worship
Office: 617-746-5880
Fr. Jonathan M. Gaspar
Archdiocesan Master of Ceremonies and Chaplain
Diane Campbell
Executive Assistant, Secretariat for Evangelization and Discipleship
Office: 617-746-5761
Fax: 617-779-4570

Divine Worship


Presiding at the Funeral Liturgy

Funeral Policy

  1. Only a bishop, priest or deacon is allowed to preach the homily at the funeral liturgy.
  2. A eulogy is not appropriate where a homily is prescribed (OCF #27), although examples from the person's life may be used in the homily. The literary genre of eulogy is not a homiletic form. Rather, the homily is to "illumine the mystery of Christian death in the light of the Risen Christ (CCC #1687)” as proclaimed in the readings.
  3. Excellence in preaching is of critical importance to the evangelizing task of the Church, especially at a moment when the faithful who live apart from the regular life of the Church may yearn for a message of faith and Christian hope.
  4. In the Archdiocese of Boston, one speaker chosen by the family may offer a brief remembrance of the deceased at the Funeral Liturgy, either before the Funeral Mass begins or before the final commendation. The remarks are to be simple, prepared and brief, ordinarily not to exceed five minutes. Care must be taken to follow this. Some priests have found it helpful to see the text beforehand. Within the context of a liturgy, the tone should remain one of faith and hope.
  5. Other occasions might offer opportunities for individuals to share remembrances of the deceased, such as during the wake service or at the cemetery. It might also be suggested to print words of remembrance in a special program booklet or worship aid, especially when there are requests for  more than one person to speak, or  when the time limit is too restrictive.