FUNERALS, CELEBRATIONS OF LIFE & MEMORIAL SERVICES
Losing a loved one is one of the most difficult times in our lives. St. Matthew's offers Pastoral Care, and service planning to support you and your family during your time of grief. Even though it is difficult and stressful, the Clergy encourage members to discuss and plan in advance the options of burial, cremation, or donation for medical purposes, and options for a memorial service.
Please call the church office, 703-430-2121, to advise the Clergy and staff of your loss and to arrange a planning meeting.
We encourage you to download our Planning Guide as a helpful starting point and may answer some of your initial questions.
Prior to your initial meeting with the Clergy, we ask you to please complete our Service Planning Questionnaire, this provides St. Matthew's with the details needed to ensure we provide your family as easy a planning experience as possible during this incredibly difficult time.
The liturgy for the dead is an Easter liturgy. It finds all its meaning in the resurrection. Because Jesus was raised from the dead, we, too, shall be raised.
The liturgy, therefore, is characterized by joy, in the certainty that “neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
This joy, however, does not make human grief unchristian. The very love we have for each other in Christ brings deep sorrow when we are parted by death. Jesus himself wept at the grave of his friend. So, while we rejoice that one we love has entered into the nearer presence of our Lord, we sorrow in sympathy with those who mourn.
(Book of Common Prayer, p.507)