The OCF contains three other “Parts,” as we read in the last paragraph of the General Introduction. Remember that all of our posts so far have covered this General Introduction, which is to the Funeral Rites what the GIRM is to the Mass.
49. Part III, “Texts of Sacred Scripture,” includes the Scripture readings and psalms for the celebration of the funeral rites. Part IV, “Office for the Dead,” includes “Morning Prayer,” “Evening Prayer,” and “Additional Hymns.” Part V, “Additional Texts,” contains “Prayers and Texts in Particular Circumstances” and “Holy Communion outside Mass.” The texts that appear in the various rites in Parts I, II, and IV may be replaced by corresponding readings and psalms given in Part III and by corresponding prayers and texts given in Part V.
In other words, there are a lot of options to use. I’ll reiterate what I’ve said many times before: options are included in the rites not for the personal preferences of the minister (“Oh, it’s going to be a long day; I think I’ll use the shorter forms of these readings and skip this prayer.”) Options are given for the edification of the faithful. What will console mourners? What will spark their religious imagination to return to church? What will honor the deceased? What suits the culture of the worshipping assembly?
Just to give you the landscape of these parts, III covers readings for adult funerals, and for children baptized and unbaptized. It also has a large selection of psalms with antiphons. It’s a huge chunk of the middle of the OCF book, but only five numbered sections 343-347.
Regarding the Office for the Dead, OCF gives an ample introductory section (348-372) followed by Morning Prayer, Evening Prayer, and a small section of hymns. That will get us to OCF 396.
OCF 397-410 makes up Part V.
Next up, the introduction to Part I (OCF 50) and then we’ll examine the Vigil and related rites (51-127). That should take about two months, I figure. Still with me on all this?