Requiem for my father: a rant
#11
SmileBugMG Wrote:The formal announcements are a lovely way to honor your father.  Having them engraved in black ink by a stationier is both dignified and appropriate.  This link might be helpful in designing them: http://www.thecatholiclibrary.org/gallery/lineart  Friends of mine put this gallery together.  All of the images are free from copyright, so you may use them as you wish.  Depending on when the Mass is and how many announcements you are ordering, you may need to move quickly because engraving is a time-consuming process.

Thank you. That link is just what the doctor ordered. I'll be perusing it further after I get some sleep, but if you know of any graphics in particular that would be appropriate for the funeral stationery (includes invitations, holy cards, and possibly also customized programs for the liturgy; and anything else I may have forgotten), do let me know.
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#12
James,

I am very sorry for your loss, and also that there won't be appropriate memorial ceremonies.   Having a memorial Mass said is a wonderful thing to do, as would be having prayer cards, as has been mentioned.  A couple of suggestions, for what they may be worth:

Ask your pastor if he can recommend any local Catholic funeral directors. Most funeral homes have small card and folder printers so they can personalize holy cards and folders in house quickly.  One refered by you priest may be willing to help you, even though they aren't handling the services.  One catch to this is what might be called typical "funeral home card art", as one link suggested has shown, and here is another Deaton-Kennedy.  But the funeral director may have catalogs showing a broader range of options.  An other option then would be to find the image(s) you would like and design your own card(s) layed out on an 8-1/2 x 11 sheet, and have it color laser printed or photo copied on card stock, then cut.  I did a prayer card for Fr. Michael J. McGivney, with his image on the front and the prayer for his canonization on the back.  They were 3.75" high by 2.5" wide and 5 would fit on an 8-1/2 x 11 sheet of card stock [landscape page, 3 across the top and two set on their side at the bottom].  I had them printed at Kinko's for something like 0.30/card.  The task is easier if you have a program like MS Publisher or Adobe PageMaker, but it can be done with a word processor.

In the old days, at a Requim Mass without the casket present, a Catafalque would be used.  The rual and small town parishes I grew up in as an altar server didn't have one, but I've seen pictures.  You could ask your priest about it, though I doubt there are many still around.  Maybe this wouldn't fit, but in an Ordinary Form parish we would have a small table where the casket would be.  On it you could have a picture, his folded US flag, perhaps his service medals.  Just a thought.
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#13
The only funeral stationery we've ever used has been sympathy acknowledgement cards from Crane & Co.  You can have "From the family of (insert name)" on the front and then you either hand write or have a simple note of thanks engraved inside.  There's mourning stationery, but I don't know if you want that too?  It's usually just plane white or off-white paper with a black border, envelopes lined in black.

Will the attendees all be familiar with the rite, or are you going to supply translations in the program so they can follow along?   For that, the only graphics I've ever seen have been angels or minimally designed borders.

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#14
frerejacques Wrote:Will the attendees all be familiar with the rite, or are you going to supply translations in the program so they can follow along?   For that, the only graphics I've ever seen have been angels or minimally designed borders.

That is another idea.  In, again, the old days, primarily Catholic Funeral Homes (and perhaps some parishes) would have small St. Joseph's Requiem Mass booklets to hand out (with "courtesy of _____ Funeral Home" printed on the back).  I'm guessing their cue was to watch for people arriving without a missal in their hands.  I did find one source, but they are pricey.  If you do a memorial folder in addition to the Holy Cards, perhaps you could have an outline of the Mass there, and the English translation of the Dies iræ, and perhaps some of the other proper prayers.
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#15
Quote:James,

How about offering the Gregorian Mass (30 consecutive requiem Masses). Your step-father deserves and is entitled to it. When my father passed away in 2005, I had the Gregorian Mass said by the Benedictine Monks at Clear Creek, OK, in the traditional Rite. I searched but could not find any trad priest who could take time to do the consecutive 30 days. Not even the FSSP.

Here's an Abbey that offers Gregorian Masses

www.abbeynews.com

Websites kind of funny right now.
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#16
James, my deepest condolences on the loss of your stepfather. I, too, urge you to consider the Gregorian Masses. I had them said for my mother and daughter.

I had them done through this group
http://www.seraphicmass.org/gregorian_masses_cart.asp
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#17
James,

How incredibly painful. In my experience, too, it is the "steps" that seem to care more about the parent than their own blood. A tragic sign of the times. Some families have eroded so far that even with insurance money, the (un)loved one will get a pauper's grave and the heir a kitchen remodel or vacation.

It is so noble of you to care enough to see to see he receives the proper rites. May God bless you for your tender care.

I'll have your step-father remembered at this Sunday's KofC Mass.




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#18
Dear lords and ladies of the forum,

I once again thank you all for your prayers, condolences, and advice.

Although there are a few loved ones who will fly in to attend any memorial services, I can't rely on them, or on my own blood relatives (none of whom knew my stepdad, and none who are Catholic) to help me financially. This is not because my family doesn't care about me, but just because my stepdad isn't family to them and probably won't fully understand why I'm undertaking all of this. I certainly can't rely on my mother to help in any way, because she divorced my stepdad and is very bitter about the whole thing.

Because my stepdad is already deprived of a wake and proper burial with military honours, I'm going to pull all the stops to ensure that his Requiem will be solemn and memorable. I confess that I'm doing this largely for my own satisfaction, but it's also an act of filial piety to my father and fraternal love to my little brother and sister (my stepdad's children by blood). Unfortunately, this requires money, and I'm already broke from buying funeral attire for my siblings. Thankfully, since the burial is already taken care of, I don't need to spend anything there except for a headstone.

Since FishEaters is like my second family, I hope you all will tolerate that I'm going to solicit for alms here. If you PM me, I'll give you my info. Don't feel bad if you aren't able to contribute anything. My stepdad's body is already taken care of (though most certainly NOT the way he or I wanted) and stipends to my priest, deacons and music director are not "necessary"; they would probably do it all for free if I asked/grovelled/put on the sad puppy face, but I want to be able to give them at least a token for their time.

The following are expenses that I will incur upon myself:

-A headstone.

-Printing and engraving of funeral invitations, holy cards, Mass programs, and a blown-up image of my stepdad to have in place of his remains at the Mass. I'll be doing the design work myself, so the only costs incurred should be the printing itself.

-The cost of printing an obituary in the newspaper.

-Stipends for the priest, deacons, altar servers, music director/organist and any non-schola singers. I may also give token stipends to my fellow schola members.

-A shadow box, which is a display case for my stepdad's medals and decorations awarded when in the Air Force.

-Photographer/videographer for the Mass. One reason I'm hiring this is because my siblings are only 9 and 11, and basically unchurched (mea culpa). They won't have much of a clue of what's going on, but if I preserve this in photos and a DVD, they'll be able to appreciate this moment when they're older. I'll also be able to send a DVD to loved ones who aren't able to make it to the Requiem in person, and post it on YouTube so you generous benefactors out there can see what I did with your donations. For this task, I've enlisted the help of a fellow FishEater, a wedding/special event videographer, who goes by the screen name of xangel. He's also made it clear that he's going to do everything he can to keep costs manageable for my meagre little bank account, but I'm going to make sure he gets his due, anyway.

:edited to add:

-I can't dress my stepdad in his uniform anymore, but I'm going to order one (according to the era he served, preferably) nevertheless to lay out and then pass on to my brother. The little troll is a military geek, and will cherish it as his most prized possession. Actually, I think this is free, but you know how the government is.

-And of course, stipends for the Gregorian Mass many of you have already suggested. This is indeed the most important thing, after the initial Requiem Mass.


I think that sums it up for now. I'll keep you all posted every step of the way, and I promise, I won't use donations to buy myself a new wig. [Image: wink.gif]

Man, this is the biggest project I've taken on in my whole life. It's terrifying but also somewhat exciting. Keep me in your prayers.
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#19
The_Harlequin_King Wrote:The following are expenses that I will incur upon myself:

-A headstone.

-

The Veterans Administration will provide the headstone or marker
TART: PAGE TITLE AREA

TART: PAGE TITLE Federal Benefits for Veterans and Dependents

The only expense to the family is if the cemetery charges a setting or placement fee.  If he is buried at a Veterans Cemetery those costs would also be covered.
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#20
moneil Wrote:The Veterans Administration will provide the headstone or marker
TART: PAGE TITLE AREA

TART: PAGE TITLE Federal Benefits for Veterans and Dependents

The only expense to the family is if the cemetery charges a setting or placement fee.  If he is buried at a Veterans Cemetery those costs would also be covered.

Well, there's a load off my mind already!
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