Church of St. Anthony

170 Meeker Avenue,  Watkins, MN 55389

 Phone: 320-764-2755



"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."

John 3:16


The death of a loved one is a stressful time. At St. Anthony’s, we invite you to honor your loved one with a funeral service that will celebrate their life and help others to mourn.

The following information is intended to be of help to you in planning a beautiful and dignified celebration. Our parish staff will assist you in this process. May God bless you and be with you at this time of grief. 


Q: Must we have all three steps: a Vigil, a Mass and a Committal (Burial)?
A: All three are recommended. You may opt not to have a vigil or to schedule the committal at another time or place.


Q: Can a funeral be celebrated without a Mass?
A: Yes, it can be done. 


Q: Can Catholics have a cremation?
A: The Catholic Church permits cremation. The preference is that the cremation would occur after the funeral Mass, but it is also possible to have an urn containing the cremated remains present at Mass rather than the deceased’s body. 


Q: What is the difference between a “vigil” and a “rosary”?
A: The Vigil Service is an official rite of the Church. In the past, the Vigil (or wake) Service consisted primarily of a time of visitation and the prayers of a Rosary.  Because so many non-Catholics attend, the Church has developed a Vigil Service based on scripture and prayer.  At St. Anthony’s and at the local funeral home (Ertl Funeral Home), the average Vigil Service (Wake) begins at 3 pm for the family, 4 pm for the public with the rosary and the Vigil service at about 6 PM.


1. Contact the funeral home to pick up the body and to handle necessary arrangements. Normally the Ertl Funeral home will fix a time for the family to come to the funeral home to make all the arrangements. The pastor of St. Anthony’s is normally present. The pastor assists in setting the day and time of the funeral.

Over the next few days, the family selects the readings, music, readers, and musicians for the funeral. These items are sent to the rectory as soon as possible in order to prepare a worship aide for the funeral liturgy.


It is at this time that the pastor asks the family to spend a few minutes reflecting on the life of the deceased and give the pastor a sketch of things that could be related in the homilies during the Vigil and the Mass.  


The funeral home assists the family in all other funeral details.


2. If family members wish to offer “Words of Remembrance” the proper time for this is at the wake or vigil service. These words should be in the form of a poem, a prayer or a brief (3-5 Minute) talk. The words should be written out in advance and should convey the consolation of God’s love, grace, mercy, and gratitude for the particular gifts that God gave to the deceased.


3. Following the traditions of the past, at this time (Year 2010) the parish provides adult servers and adult ushers for the funeral mass.


Q: What are the normal honorariums for a funeral?
A: Normally they are incorporated in the paper work by the mortuary, who collects them and pays them to the parish.
- for the Church $150.00
- for the priest $100.00
- For musicians and singers $100.00

In lieu of flowers, families often request donations to specific funds or projects in the parish in memory of their loved ones. This request can be included in the funeral worship aide.

Monetary gifts given specifically for a Mass for the deceased must be turned over to the Church. They should be delivered to the rectory within a week of the funeral. You may request specific dates and they will be honored if they are available.


Q: How does the family arrange a burial plot or a spot in the columbarium?
A: The parish secretary is happy to assist in this matter. St. Anthony’s parish has a very active Cemetery committee that works hard to keep the cemetery neat, clean and attractive.


Q: Can things be bought for the parish in the name of the deceased?
A: The answer is ‘yes’!  Sometimes there is not a long list of needs. On occasions such as this, families are asked to consider a monetary gift in the name of the deceased. This gift would be combined with other like gifts and the principle would be invested until that time when a financial need is present in the parish church. These gifts are listed for many years in the parish financial report, keeping the name of the deceased alive in the minds of the parish family.