Anointing of the Sick / Funeral

Anointing of the sick

The sacrament of Anointing of the Sick is administered to those in who are seriously ill or in danger of death through old age. It is also fitting for a person to receive the sacrament before a serious operation. One should be anointed well before the person is actually “dying” because the more they are able to participate in the sacrament, the greater its benefits will be. The priest’s Laying on of Hands (part of the full ceremony) can sometimes bring physical healing during an illness if God deems it necessary for their spiritual healing. The anointing is usually preceded by sacramental confession, if possible, and includes the reception of Holy Communion, if possible. Thus the sacrament brings forgiveness of sins, spiritual strength, the comfort of knowing one is at peace with God and prepares the recipient to make that beautiful offering of their entire lives to God, an offering which is unique to them alone.

To receive this sacrament, please call the Parish Office and the secretary will take down your information so that a priest may contact you directly. After office hours, the voice mail menu will offer you several options. In the case of an emergency press “3” and leave a brief message including the name of the sick person and your phone number. The priest on duty will be paged. Please give your phone number slowly and clearly.

The Funeral

Please accept our sympathies at the death of your loved one. When someone has died, the first step is to contact a mortuary to prepare the body for the funeral rites. There are mortuaries advertised on the back of our weekly bulletin. Please specify Saint John the Baptist in Costa Mesa as the church to hold the funeral Mass and to perform the Graveside Service. If Military Honors at the burial are desired, make this known to the mortuary so that they can arrange it.

Typically, the priest who is scheduled to be on duty the day of the funeral will perform the services and contact you for information about the deceased, informing the family of its options for participating at the funeral Mass and giving the family an overview of the entire proceedings.

Bereavement Minister

A Bereavement Minister from our parish is available to guide grieving family members through this difficult time.  Please feel free to contact them as needed.

Vigil Service

If a Vigil Service is desired, it may take the form of a Scripture service, recitation of the Rosary or both. The Vigil Service usually takes place with the body of the deceased present at the mortuary on the evening preceding the Funeral Mass. This service is typically conducted by a Bereavement Minister of the parish.

Eulogies and Words of Remembrance

The preferred places for Eulogies by family members and friends is at the Vigil Service or Graveside Service, not at the Funeral Mass. These words of remembrance are most effective when they do not try to be a complete history of the individual and from three to five minutes in length each.


The Church prefers that cremation take place after the Funeral Mass. If this is not possible, the Church allows for the Funeral Mass to be celebrated with the cremated remains of the body present. Cremated remains are to be treated with the same respect given to the human body. This includes the use of a worthy vessel/urn which is to be buried in a grave or entombed in a mausoleum. Scattering the cremated remains, keeping them at home or dividing them up among family members is not allowed.