OCF 31: Themes for Funeral Music

A focus not on human mortality, but on Christ, and in a context of consolation:

31. Since music can evoke strong feelings, the music for the celebration of the funeral rites should be chosen with great care. The music at funerals should support, console, and uplift the participants and should help to create in them a spirit of hope in Christ’s victory over death and in the Christian’s share in that victory.

I can’t but reiterate my doubt on a first-person hymn, however revered, as more suitable for a funeral than musical texts along the themes of Christ’s resurrection. That said, pastoral consolation is a sound principle.

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
This entry was posted in Order of Christian Funerals, post-conciliar liturgy documents, Rites. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to OCF 31: Themes for Funeral Music

  1. Fred says:

    The present funeral rite is in desperate need of revision. The biggest problem, in my opinion, is the presumption of salvation for everyone. The rite is very weak on asking mercy of God for the deceased, which is the primary reason for the funeral mass: to ask that the merits of Christ’s sacrifice be applied to the deceased, so that he will be purified and welcomed into Paradise.

  2. Todd says:

    As we’ve seen in the general introduction to the funeral rites, the Mass is primarily about Christ, and about the participation in the paschal mystery. I’m inclined to think that Mass is generally the same, and a secondary theme concerns the deceased and the mourners.

    That said, my sense of the funeral rites is that the texts are based on the Scriptures, and those texts that treat death are generally hopeful, and less of a petitionary nature.

    So my question might be in response to this: Do you object to the matter of the rite, or how it is generally preached? In anay event, we should watch the content carefully once we look at the prayers, readings, psalms, hymns, and Scriptures. (OCF 69ff)

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