Planning a funeral
Please contact Mark Wyss, 612.317.3410.
The Basilica staff is here to support you and your family as you plan or pre-plan a celebration of life. They will guide you through the entire process and be on hand the day of the service.
What to expect the day of your service
Our staff will be on hand to coordinate your service and reception and to support you on this day of grief and remembrance.
- Morning funerals begin at 11:00am
- Afternoon funerals begin at noon.
- Most funerals with visitations last 3 ½ to 4 hours.
The following documents will help your preparations:
Funeral Planning Form (available on this page) — please complete this document and return it to Mark Wyss as soon as possible:
Fees associated with the funeral service can be invoiced through the funeral home. This is preferred method as it allows you be concerned with other matters during a time of grief. You may pay directly with checks made out to individuals associated with the funeral service (i.e. organist, cantor, presider) as well as the fees for the church and hall. You may also pay online. An electronic invoice will be sent to you and you will be able to pay through our website.
Livestream for Funerals
The Basilica of Saint Mary has equipment to provide livestreaming of events, and can make this service available to you for funerals at your request. If you elect for us to provide this service, you agree that you will not seek to hold The Basilica of Saint Mary or any of its staff or agents liable for any disruptions or unavailability of the service for any reason, including the lack of video, audio or other technical failures.
Church Policy on Cremation:
The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith recently issued a new instruction on Christian burial, with a particular emphasis on ashes and cremation. The document affirms the Church’s traditional preference for burial of bodies of the deceased, while making clear that cremation is a legitimate choice when it is done for sanitary, economic, or social reasons, and it is not chosen out of a denial of Christian doctrine on the resurrection of the body.
The document issues a number of directives about cremation:
- Cremation must never violate the explicitly-stated or the reasonably inferable wishes of the deceased faithful.
- Scandal and religious indifferentism must be avoided in the disposition of the ashes.
- Ashes of the faithful must be laid to rest in a sacred place, that is, in a cemetery or other dedicated place for this purpose.
- Ashes may not be scattered, reserved in a private home, divided among family members, or preserved in mementos or jewelry.
These directives are clarifications of the already existing laws of the Church, and so they are consistent with the current policy of the Archdiocese.
The document provides a reminder that these restrictions on the “reservation of the ashes of the departed in a sacred place ensure that they are not excluded from the prayers and remembrance of their family or the Christian community. It prevents the faithful departed from being forgotten, or their remains from being shown a lack of respect, which eventuality is possible, most especially once the immediately subsequent generation has too passed away. Also it prevents any unfitting or superstitious practices.”
Walking with you
During this time of sadness, we’re here to help any way we can. If you or a family member is struggling with grief, please contact Wendy Caduff, 612.317.3474, to learn about our Grief Support Ministry.