Funeral Guidelines


A Guide to

Funeral Planning

Revised, June 2018

 Saint Catherine of Siena Catholic Church

Great Falls, Virginia


Funeral Directors (only funeral directors) please click here to provide the Parish with funeral details.


On behalf of the Parish of Saint Catherine of Siena Catholic Church we extend to your family our prayerful sympathy in this time of loss and grief. There are many people praying for you and with you. At Sunday Mass we all pray especially for those of the Parish family who have passed away recently. In the Sacred Liturgy we pray for the repose of the souls of our loved ones and receive the consolation of praying together with the whole Church, with all the saints and with Jesus Christ Himself.

The death of the just, we are told in Scripture, is blessed in the eyes of the Lord (Psalm 116,15). When a Christian dies, suitable reverence should accompany all of the rites and ceremonies that will accompany you. In the face of death, the Church proclaims that God has created us for Himself and that Christ has broken the bonds of sin and death that keep us from Him. In the face of death, Christians have hope. In Christ, upon the sleep of death, “life is changed, not ended.”

The Church’s funeral ceremonies begin with the wake the night before. This is an appropriate time to reconcile with the past and even to celebrate the life of the deceased with favorite stories. The wake also begins the prayers for the deceased and sets the tone for the funeral the next day.

The Holy Mass enables us to offer up our prayers and sorrows in union with Christ’s perfect Sacrifice, made present on the altar under the forms of bread and wine. In keeping with the ancient Christian teaching on purgatory – whereby souls experience a final purgation from the effects of sin – the Requiem Mass begs God to free the deceased from all bonds of sin and to receive the person into paradise. We have confidence that our prayers hasten the deceased’s journey through purgatory to the eternal joys of heaven (2Maccabees 12,43-46). The Funeral Mass is an opportunity to reconcile with God with focus on the present and the future in the light of Our Lord’s Death and Resurrection.

The Funeral Mass differs from a memorial service since its focus is Jesus Christ, His victory over death, and the deceased’s participation in the Paschal Mystery. Nevertheless, the Funeral Mass also seeks to console the family and friends of the departed with the Christian hope of life after death and our continuing union with the deceased in Christ.

It can be comforting to remember that our deceased loved ones have seen the face of God. We are then better able to reconcile with all the faithful departed. We also can consider the possibility that they now might feel differently about their last wishes. Our offering of personal prayers and the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass benefits those who have died; how we do so benefits the living.

Let us pray.

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord.

And let perpetual light shine upon them.

May they rest in peace. Amen.

May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed,

through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

May the Lord be your strength

and may His Mother be your comfort.

God bless you.

Rev. Jerry J. Pokorsky



Of Immediate Interest. 4

When scheduling a funeral, it is very important that the priest deal directly with the funeral home director. 4

The Mass time of a funeral 4

Reception of Communion: practicing Catholics only. 4

There are various forms of a funeral liturgy or Memorial Mass. 4

No basic fees for long-time parishioners. 4

Elements of a traditional funeral liturgy. 5

Frequent Questions. 7

We encourage your private prayers. 7

Viewing cannot take place in the church. 7

Several funeral homes are nearby. 7

Luncheon facilities are available. 7

You may opt to select the Readings (Liturgy of the Word). 7

Music program is regulated by church policies. 8

Flower arrangements normally permitted. 8

Eulogies encouraged, but not permitted during Mass. 9

Proper burial must take place. 9

Cremation permitted. 9

Outside or visiting priests welcome. 10

Flag removed from casket during Mass. 10

Pictures allowed in vestibule but not sanctuary. 10

Offertory procession optional 10

Overview of the Funeral Mass. 11

The Greeting. 11

The Opening Prayer. 11

The Liturgy of the Word. 11

The Liturgy of the Eucharist. 11

Final Commendation. 11

Sample Funeral Program.. 12

Funeral Music Suggestions. 13

Scripture Reading Selections. 14

Of Immediate Interest

When scheduling a funeral, it is very important that the priest deal directly with the funeral home director. 

The funeral home is paid to organize the logistics of funerals, the logistics that can be quite complicated (family schedules, funeral home constraints, cemetery timetables, etc.).  Hence, it would not be appropriate for a priest to set the time and date of a funeral with a family member.  It is a strict rule of the Parish that the priest is to speak directly to the funeral director after the family has met with him or her.  After the priest has spoken with the funeral director and has established the schedule, he will set into motion further contact with the family, contacting the Choir Director and other Parish staff and volunteers.  Experience shows that this strict rule prevents much misunderstanding and miscommunication.  The family should also let the priest know who makes the family funeral decisions.

The Mass time of a funeral

The Mass time of a funeral when Parish priests celebrate is usually 11 a.m., Noon or 1 p.m. The earliest time slot, schedule permitting, is 10 a.m. Schedule permitting, a funeral may be celebrated on Saturdays as follows:  10 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 11 a.m., 11:30 a.m. or 12 Noon.  Funerals cannot be celebrated on Sundays or Holy Days.

Reception of Communion: practicing Catholics only

Catholic faith in the Real Presence requires that only practicing Catholics, who are properly disposed (i.e., without an awareness of mortal sin) should step forward to receive Communion.  However, during this sacred time, all others are warmly encouraged to silently pray for the repose of the soul of the deceased loved one, as well as the consolation of family and friends.

There are various forms of a funeral liturgy or Memorial Mass

1) Wake Service the afternoon or evening before the Funeral.  Funeral Mass celebrated during the day.  Burial takes place immediately after the Mass.  2)  Same as the preceding, but the burial takes place at a later date (e.g., burial takes place at the place of birth, or Arlington National Cemetery).  3)  The family does not desire a Wake Service.  The Funeral Mass takes place during the day followed by a burial as above.  4)  Simple Memorial Mass without a casket or cremated remains.

No basic fees for long-time parishioners

In recognition of their long-time financial support of the Parish, parishioners are not charged any fees for funerals. Free-will donations are accepted, of course, but not expected.  The Parish pays for the cantor and organist hence there is no need to make a personal donation to them. (However, fees will apply for additional musicians.)  Funeral homes should not “charge” the family of a parishioner on behalf of the church.  (If the funeral home charges a parishioner for our services, we would like to be informed to make the correction.)  If non-parishioners receive permission to use the church for a funeral as an accommodation, they will be asked by the funeral home to make a contribution of $600 to the Parish to cover costs.

Elements of a traditional funeral liturgy

1) Wake Service at the funeral home; 2) Funeral Mass; and, 3) Graveside Service.   The Wake Service takes about 15 minutes (or perhaps 20 minutes if the family opts for a Rosary).    The Funeral Mass generally takes about 45 minutes as celebrated by the priests of the Parish.  The Graveside Service is brief, perhaps 10 minutes.

What a Funeral Mass is:  A Funeral Mass is an act of liturgical worship upon the death of a Christian celebrating the Cross and Resurrection of Jesus Christ and our hope – individually and as a community – in our participation in the Cross and Resurrection. During a funeral, we pray for the repose of the soul of the deceased as well as for the consolation of family and friends.  A Funeral Mass begins in what may be referred to as the “earthly liturgy.”  On earth, we cannot see clearly the meaning of life or our destiny.  Only faith in Jesus Christ and His Church provides us with this vision.  Early in the liturgy, we may even find ourselves uncomfortable, and reluctant to be present.  The Church in Her liturgy understands and appreciates this sense.  The Mass proceeds with the instruction and consoling words of the scriptural readings and a brief homily.  It proceeds with the movement from the earthly to the heavenly.  The Mass continues with the offering of bread and wine, the “work of human hands” which are destined to become at the time of the Consecration the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  During Communion, practicing Catholics are invited to step forward for the reception of Holy Communion while others, remaining in place, are warmly encouraged to pray for the repose of the soul of the deceased.  As the Funeral Mass comes to a close, there is often is a sense of relief and release, the result of the hard “work” of prayer (after all, “liturgy” means “work”).  Hence, the liturgy has the celebrant in the name of the Church sending the deceased to heavenly bliss:  “May the angels lead you to Paradise….”  The overall trajectory, therefore, is one from sorrow and even an interior resistance in attending the funeral and concludes with an interior joy that comes with our faith the Resurrection, God’s overabundant mercy, and the beautiful prospects of eternal life.  The “earthly liturgy” is therefore transformed into the most glorious “heavenly liturgy.”

What a Funeral is not:  A Funeral is not a “celebration of the life” of the deceased, nor is it a mere gathering of family and friends for purposes of light conversation and “remembering the good things.”  These sentiments, as worthy as they are, take place in the wonderful social settings that take place outside of Mass.  (After all, there is much truth in the weary saying that the only time we have a family reunion is when there is a death in the family.)  Nor is the Mass – especially the music – a means of consoling entertainment, often reminding us of the deceased’s “favorite hymn” or even “favorite song.”    As mentioned above, the Funeral Mass is a profound act of worship.  It does not belong to the family or priest (who is bound by the Church’s liturgical legislation). The Mass belongs to Christ and His Church.


Supreme Court of the United States

Washington, D. C. 20543



September 1, 1998

Dr. James C. Goodloe

Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church

1627 Monument Avenue

Richmond, Virginia 23220-2925

Dear Dr. Goodloe:

I looked for you unsuccessfully at the luncheon following the funeral yesterday. I wanted to tell you how reverent and inspiring I found the service that you conducted.

In my aging years, I have attended so many funerals of prominent people that I consider myself a connoisseur of the genre. When the deceased and his family are non-believers, of course, there is not much to be said except praise for the departed who is no more. But even in Christian services conducted for deceased Christians, I am surprised at how often the eulogy is the centerpiece of the service, rather than (as it was in your church) the Resurrection of Christ, and the eternal life which follows from that. I am told that, in Roman Catholic canon law, encomiums at funeral Masses are not permitted—though if that is the rule, I have never seen it observed except in the breach. I have always thought there is much to be said for such a prohibition, not only because it spares from embarrassment or dissembling those of us about whom little good can truthfully be said, but also because, even when the deceased was an admirable person—indeed, especially when the deceased was an admirable person—praise for his virtues can cause us to forget that we are praying for, and giving thanks for, God’s inexplicable mercy to a sinner. (My goodness, that seems more like a Presbyterian thought than a Catholic one!)

Perhaps the clergymen who conduct relatively secular services are moved by a desire not to offend the non-believers in attendance—whose numbers tend to increase in proportion to the prominence of the deceased. What a great mistake. Weddings and funerals (but especially funerals) are the principal occasions left in modern America when you can preach the Good News not just to the faithful, but to those who have never really heard it.

Many thanks, Dr. Goodloe, for a service that did honor to Lewis and homage to God. It was a privilege to sit with your congregation. Best regards.


Antonin Scalia

Frequent Questions

We encourage your private prayers

(Q)      Are there any prayers you recommend for us between now and the Funeral Mass?

(A)       Yes. The Holy Rosary makes for a lovely family prayer. It allows you to take turns leading and following. It assists you in joining your sorrows and joys with the life of Christ. If you meditate on the Sorrowful Mysteries, it might be helpful to add the First Glorious Mystery so as to conclude on a hopeful note with the Resurrection. The Chaplet of Divine Mercy beautifully draws us into a simple meditation on Our Lord’s Passion and into prayer for all those who need His mercy. The Liturgy of the Hours is the official public prayer for the Church throughout the day. Holy Mass is the official worship of the Church. Joining in the weekday Parish Mass helps us to experience the Holy Sacrifice in a quiet and meditative setting. We can get no closer to heaven than by being in the presence of and in being in communion with the Blessed Sacrament. To that end, this is a moment when our loved ones would be especially pleased if we made a good confession.

Viewing cannot take place in the church

(Q)      Can the viewing take place in the church instead of the funeral home?

(A)       Unfortunately, no.

Several funeral homes are nearby

(Q)      What funeral home do you recommend?

(A)       We do not recommend any particular funeral home, although parishioners often use Adams-Green (Herndon), Money and King (Vienna) and Murphy Funeral Home (Falls Church).  Other local funeral homes also are also nearby.  However, if the funeral home is some distance from the church, it probably will be necessary for the funeral director to obtain the services of clergy local to their funeral home for the Wake Service.

Luncheon facilities are available

(Q)      Are facilities available for a gathering or luncheon after the Funeral Mass?

(A)       The parish hall is available for use.  It has a capacity of 175 people standing. Some seating is available.  Contact the rectory office for details.  If you wish, you are free to make arrangements with outside caterers.

You may opt to select the Readings (Liturgy of the Word)

(Q)      Are friends or members of the family permitted to read at Mass?

(A)       Yes. A family member or friend may do one or two of the readings (except for the Responsorial Psalm and the Gospel). This person should be someone who already serves as a reader at Mass and lives a life consistent with Sacred Scripture. The reader must be a practicing Catholic. Given the understandable difficulty that family members likely will have maintaining their composure at the funeral, the Parish is very happy to provide a reader.

(Q)      Which readings can we use?

(A)       The priest usually has a sense as to the appropriateness of readings under various circumstances.  However, if you wish, we invite you to choose some of the readings that will be incorporated into the Mass. The list of options for the readings, as approved for the Rites of Christian Burial, can be found in the “Scripture Reading Selections” appendix. The priest who will be preaching sometimes has a particular Gospel passage in mind. Kindly consult with him before selecting the Gospel.

(Q)      Do the readers need to bring a copy of their readings with them to the Funeral Mass?

(A)       No, they do not need to provide a copy for the Funeral Mass. They will proclaim their readings from the Lectionary at the pulpit.  See the priest before Mass begins.

(Q)      Do the readers recite the Prayers of the Faithful?

(A)       It is customary for the priest – assisted by a deacon if available – to pray the Prayers of the Faithful from the ritual.

Music program is regulated by church policies

(Q)      How do I arrange for music?

(A)       Music is arranged through the Parish’s Choir Director. He can be reached at 703.759.4350. Normally he will contact you after he has been informed of the settled schedule.

(Q)      Why are our music choices limited?

(A)       The sacred music that we use at St. Catherine of Siena is chosen from those pieces that were written specifically for the Holy Mass and are of superior quality. Since the Sacred Liturgy actually makes present to us the Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ, the sacred music should reflect our demeanor as if we were witnessing those very events in time. This helps explain our Mass selections as well as songs we exclude or use only outside of Mass.

Some hymns that are still popular in various church settings would already have passed into disuse in this Parish, especially songs that have arisen out of other Christian traditions, songs that are self-referential rather than prayers directed to the Lord, songs that presume salvation and songs that obscure the full meaning of the Holy Eucharist. For these reasons please do not request Amazing Grace, One Bread One Body, On Eagle’s Wings and I am the Bread of Life, Be Not Afraid, Hosea Song (i.e. “Come back to me..”) and “Here I am Lord -- all of which have a proper setting but not necessarily at a Funeral Mass.

Some musical parts of the Funeral Mass are not hymns per se but are sung liturgical prayers that have been used in the Sacred Liturgy for so long that they even have their own unique melodies. These include Requiem Aeternam (sung during the Entrance), Lux Aeterna and In Paradisum (sung during the final rituals) or appropriate variations on these hymns. These lovely prayers are similar to the regular parts of the Mass that are chanted in the ancient languages at St. Catherine of Siena every Sunday: Kyrie, Alleluia, Sanctus and Agnus Dei. They will be sung in Greek, Hebrew, and Latin, respectively.

You are encouraged to choose hymns for the Entrance, Offertory, and Recessional (see Funeral Music Suggestions in the Appendix). Otherwise kindly ask the Choir Director to help you select appropriate pieces. His decisions will be considered final and he will inform the Parish office of what selections are to be included in the Funeral program.

(Q)      Are bagpipes permitted during Mass?

(A)       While bagpipes are not permitted during Mass, permission is granted after Mass (as the casket is placed in the funeral coach) or at the graveside (after the prayers).

Flower arrangements normally permitted

(Q)      What about flowers?

(A)       Flowers are welcome in Church except for during Advent and Lent. Flowers that get placed in the sanctuary are used in the worship of God and, therefore, some flowers should remain in the sanctuary after the Mass is concluded. At any time of year an arrangement or two might be placed in the Church lobby as a decoration; these may return home or be brought to the cemetery.

Eulogies encouraged, but not permitted during Mass

(Q)      Can someone deliver a eulogy?

(A)       Yes, but only at the wake or burial or reception. The Catholic Church does not permit eulogies at the Funeral Mass. The interior peace that will have been knit together by prayers, chants, Scripture readings and Holy Communion can be lost in the face of reminisces about the faithful departed, which renders such reflections better suited to more informal settings. Although encountered in some Catholic Funeral Masses, remarks at the conclusion of the Funeral Mass are not permitted at Saint Catherine of Siena. Please do not ask for an exception. We warmly recommend that the family prepare a brief (or longer, if preferable) narrative biography of the deceased.  This is helpful for the celebrant as he prepares his homily.  Although liturgical legislation proscribes eulogies, a few words about the virtuous acts of the deceased are often appropriate during the brief funeral homily.

Proper burial must take place

(Q)      What about the internment?

(A)       Interment usually follows the Funeral Mass. In those cases, the priest will accompany the family to the cemetery for the funeral rites at the grave. If the deceased is to be buried at a later time, please make arrangements through the Parish office to ensure that a priest or deacon will be present for burial.  Due to increased security procedures on military bases and installations, expect the funeral director to contact the designated Catholic chaplain to perform graveside services.

Plans for a burial must be made before the Parish can confirm the Funeral Mass.  The desire to keep your loved one’s remains close by explains why a nearby cemetery can be a wise choice. 

(Q)      May we have the traditional prayers for burial?

(A)       Yes. The traditional (Latin or English) prayers at the graveside certainly can be provided instead of the prayers from the contemporary ritual. Please let your priest know ahead of time so that he will bring the proper ritual to the cemetery.

Cremation permitted

(Q)      What about cremation?

(A)       Although it is now permitted to have the deceased’s mortal remains cremated and even to have the cremated remains present at the funeral, the Church prefers that the body not be cremated and urges that, if cremation occurs, it be done after the funeral (although cremation often takes place well before the funeral Mass, and this option remains available).

When the body is cremated the Church requires that the cremated remains be laid to rest in a sacred place: buried in a grave, buried at sea or entombed in a mausoleum or columbarium. It is forbidden to keep the cremated remains at the home of a relative or friend or scatter the cremated remains. If the family does not intend to inter or entomb the cremated remains, then Saint Catherine of Siena Parish will not be able to do the funeral ceremony.

The Church prohibits cremation absolutely when it signifies a lack of belief in the resurrection of the body.

Outside or visiting priests welcome

(Q)      May we invite another priest from outside the diocese to participate in the Funeral Mass?

(A)       Yes, if they are in good standing with the Church and abide by our policies. Please ask them to contact the Rectory so that they can coordinate their collaboration. All priests from outside the diocese are required to demonstrate being in good standing. Their Bishop and/or Provincial will need to send the appropriate letters to the Chancery of the Diocese of Arlington.

Flag removed from casket during Mass

(Q)      May a flag be draped over the coffin?

(A)       Yes, before and after the Funeral Mass but not during. As the casket enters into the church, the national flag is removed and the funeral pall is placed on top to call to mind the deceased’s life in Christ at Baptism. The family may place a family bible or a crucifix on the coffin after it has been draped with the pall. At the conclusion of the sacred rites, the funeral pall is removed and the flag may be placed again on the casket before departing the church.

Pictures allowed in the vestibule but not the sanctuary

(Q)      Do you allow the placement of pictures?

(A)       Pictures of the deceased may be placed in the vestibule (entrance) of the church, but not in the church or within the sanctuary.  The focus of attention during the Sacred Liturgy should be the altar of Sacrifice as well as the casket where the body of the deceased – which in life was the Temple of the Holy Spirit – is reverenced.

Offertory procession optional

(Q)      May we have an offertory procession?

(A)       A brief Offertory procession may take place by selected members of the family.  If so desired, two or three or four members of the family – at the appointed time under the direction of the priest – step forward with the vessels holding hosts and wine.  The procedure is quite simple and is easily directed by the priest.  Alternatively, the procession may be omitted and the priest simply continues with the Mass with the gifts pre-arranged near the altar.


Overview of the Funeral Mass


Out of reverence for the sacred space of our Holy House and in consideration for those would be praying in the Church, family and friends who arrive well before the beginning of the Funeral Mass are welcome to visit with each other outside and in the Church lobby. Once inside the Church proper, all are invited to join in the spiritual communion of silent prayer. When the sacred rituals begin, everyone will be prompted to join in the spoken and sung prayers as they are able.

The Greeting

The priest greets the casket and the deceased’s family at the doors of the vestibule (narthex). He sprinkles the casket with holy water and the funeral pall is placed over it.


The Opening Prayer

When all are gathered, the priest prays the Collect (opening prayer) for the dead.

The Liturgy of the Word

This portion of the Mass consists of one or two readings from the Old and New Testament, a sung Responsorial Psalm, and the Gospel. The family may choose the scripture readings from approved texts found in the Order of Christian Funerals. After the Gospel, the celebrant or another priest or deacon delivers the homily; then the General Intercessions are prayed.

The Liturgy of the Eucharist

The altar is prepared and the gifts are brought forward. Then, the Preface and Eucharistic Prayer follow. The Sanctus, Memorial Acclamation, and Agnus Dei are typically chanted.  The Lord’s Prayer immediately precedes the distribution of Holy Communion.

To help guests avoid suffering the awkwardness of not knowing what to do when approaching the altar rail to receive Holy Communion, the priest beforehand may remind all present of the ancient Christian tradition that only those in full communion with the Church who are in the state of grace and keeping the Eucharistic fast may receive Holy Communion.

Final Commendation

At the end of Mass, we make a final farewell to the departed Christian. The ancient antiphon, “Subvenite Sancti Dei” (Saints of God, Come to His Aid), is chanted while the casket is blessed with holy water and then with incense – a reminder of Baptism and a sign of our prayers rising up to God (Revelation 8,4).


Sample Funeral Program





Sprinkling with Holy Water and Placing of the Pall

Entrance Procession


Entrance Hymn – Be Thou My Vision #238





First Reading: Wisdom 3:1-9


Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 23


Second Reading: Romans 6:3-9


Gospel Acclamation (chant Alleluia)


Gospel: John 11:17-27



General Intercessions

Offertory Hymn – The King of Love #564

Holy Holy Holy

Memorial Acclamation

Lamb of God

Communion Solo Hymn – Panis Angelicus (Franck)




Prayer of Commendation and Incensing of Casket


Saints of God (Duffy)




In Paradisum (Plainchant)

Funeral Music Suggestions


Hymns for Entrance or Offertory:

#209 All You Who Seek A Comfort Sure

#238 Be Thou My Vision

#355 I Heard the Voice of Jesus Say Come Unto Me and Rest

#392 Lead Kindly Light Amid the Circling Gloom

#406 Lord of All Hopefulness

#446 O God Our Help in Ages Past

#564 The King of Love My Shepherd Is


Responsorial Psalms:

Psalm 23

Psalm 27

Psalm 103


Eucharistic Hymns for Offertory or Communion:

Panis Angelicus (Franck)

#194 Adoro Te, Devote

#377 Jesus My Lord My God My All (Sweet Sacrament)

#408 Lord, Who at Thy First Eucharist

#452 O Jesus We Adore Thee (O Sacrament Most Holy)

#458 O Lord I Am Not Worthy

#490 Panis Angelicus (Lambilotte)


 Marian Hymns (generally sung at Offertory):

Ave Maria (Schubert)

#278 Daily Daily Sing to Mary

#327 Hail Queen of Heaven the Ocean Star

#362 Immaculate Mary

#468 O Sanctissima

#525 Sing of Mary Pure and Lowly



Music for Incensing of the Casket:

Saints of God (Duffy)

Subvenite, Sancti Dei (plainchant)


Recessional Hymns:

May the Angels (Hughes)

In Paradisum (plainchant)

#198 All Creatures of Our God and King*

#213 Alleluia Sing to Jesus*

#294 Faith of Our Fathers

#297 For All the Saints*

#315 God of Our Fathers

#345 Holy God We Praise Thy Name

#356 I Know That My Redeemer Lives

#428 Now Thank We All Our God

#446 O God Our Help in Ages Past

#495 Praise My Soul the King of Heaven*


*Please Note: hymns containing the word “Alleluia” may not be sung during Lent.


Additional selections from the Saint Michael Hymnal may also be appropriate depending on the Liturgical Season (Easter Season, Advent etc.) – please contact the Choir Director for additional guidance.

Music from the Adoremus Hymnal (which include a good deal from the St. Michael Hymnal) may be heard at: 

Scripture Reading Selections


Choose from the following approved readings or ask the priest for his recommendations


Readings in italics are the choices for the first reading during Easter season.

First Reading


2 Maccabees 12:43-46

Matthew 5:1-12a

Job 19:1, 23-27

Matthew 11:25-30

Wisdom 3:1-9

Matthew 25:1-13

Wisdom 4:7-15

Mathew 25:31-46

Isaiah 25:6a, 7-9

Mark 15:33-39, 16:1-6

Lamentations 3:17-26

Luke 7:11-17

Daniel 12:1-3

Luke 12:35-40


Luke 23:33, 39-43

Second Reading

Luke 23: 44-46, 50, 52-53; 24:1-6a

Acts 10:34-43

Luke 24:13-35

Romans 5:5-11

John 5:24-29

Romans 5:17-21

John 6:37-40

Romans 6:3-9

John 6:51-58

Romans 8:14-23

John 11: 17-27

Romans 8:3lb-35, 37-39


Romans 14:7-9, l0b-12


I Corinthians 15:20-23, 24b-28


I Corinthians 15:51-57


2 Corinthians 4:14 -5:1


2 Corinthians 5:1, 6-10


Philippians 3:20-21


1 Thessalonians 4:13-18


2 Timothy 2:8-13


1 John 3:1-2


1 John 3:14-16


Revelation 14:13


Revelation 20:11 - 21:1


Revelation 21:1-5a, 6b-7










Catholic Church

1020 Springvale Road

Great Falls, Virginia 22066

Parish Office: 703.759.4350

Parish Fax: 703.759.3753


Rev. Jerry J. Pokorsky, Pastor


Sacramental Schedule

The Church typically opens by 7:30 a.m. and closes around 7 p.m.  But times may vary because of variations in the Pastor's schedule and the occasional inability to obtain help in locking the church at night.

The Confession Schedule continues

Sacrament of Penance:
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday: 7:45 am – 8:15 am (No Confessions on Holy Days and civil holidays)
Saturday afternoon: 3:30 pm to 4:30 pm
Expanded schedule for Advent and Lent
All Day Eucharistic Adoration
Every Wednesday: 1 pm through Thursday morning, 8:30 am
Every First Friday: 9 am through Saturday morning, 8:30 am

Mass Schedule:
8 am 10 am 12 Noon*
*Novus Ordo Latin Mass

Saturday: 8:30 am & 5:30 pm Vigil Mass

Weekdays: 8:30 am, (Wednesdays: 12:15 pm)

Holydays (except Christmas):
8:30 am & 7 pm

Although the regular weekday Mass schedule is solidly in place, since this is a one-priest parish, there may be times when Mass cancellations are necessary.  Please register here if you attend weekday Masses and want to receive cancellation notifications and other updates as opportune.  We will not abuse your contact information.  Click here

 (Note: After clicking the weekday Mass registration link above, please scroll to the bottom right of the page and replace the "0" with a "1" to proceed.)

Contact Us

Rev. Jerry J. Pokorsky
Direct Line to Pastor 703.759.3520
No text messages please; contact the office for administrative questions.

Office Hours
Monday - Friday: 9:30 am to 1:30 pm 
Closed on Federal Holidays

Saint Catherine of Siena Church
1020 Springvale Road
Great Falls, VA 22066
Have a question? Have a comment? Please contact us!
Phone: 703.759.4350
Fax: 703.759.3753


 Parish Registration Application  Click here.  

(Note: After clicking the application link above, please scroll to the bottom right of the page and replace the "0" with a "1" to proceed.)

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St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church

1020 Springvale Rd., Great Falls, VA 22066

Parish Office: 703.759.4350
Fax: 703.759.3753
Religious Education: 703.759.3530
Siena Academy: 703.759.4129