"If one member suffers in the body of Christ which is the Church, all the members suffer with that member."
For this reason, those who are baptized into Christ and nourished at the same table of the Lord are responsible for one another. Not only does the Church surround its suffering and grieving members with words of hope and gestures of consolation, but it entrusts this ministry to each one of us who claims membership in the body of Christ. Paying attention and attending to the movements of our own hearts as we grieve the death of another will teach us much about God and faith and about the many ways we are being called, even now, to die for the sake of our own journey into God.
The Church, in the persons of the pastoral ministers, is present with the family and 'is with the mourners in their need and to provide an atmosphere of sensitive concern and confident faith. They lead them in the Prayers of the Church on the evening of the wake Visitation. The solemn proclamation of the Word of God is at the heart of the vigil. It is the place for God's word to embrace the words of grief and memories of the bereaved.