[quote="samaritana, post:1, topic:205093"]
The order of Christian funerals includes a homily (not eulogy) for the vigil service, not just for the funeral mass. I have been trying to find information on how to write a homily for the vigil service, as I am part of a bereavement ministry where lay people often oversee the entire Vigil service. Where can I find resources to help me write a homily for the vigil?
Welcome to the forums. Unfortunately, you are not going to like my response, but, I cannot in good conscience lead you to do something that the Church does not condone unless there are extreme circumstances. Samaritana, contrary to what has probably been explained to you, and contrary to what you might read in succeeding posts, the laity should not be preaching a homily, nor, should they be leading the Vigil for the Deceased.. Now, inasmuch as it's great to be a part of the bereavement ministry, lay people really should not be overseeing the entire Vigil service. This is for the priest and/or deacon to do. Please note what Ecclesia de Mysterio states:
Leading the Celebration at Funerals
In the present circumstances of growing dechristianization and of abandonment of religious practice, death and the time of obsequies can be one of the most opportune pastoral moments in which the ordained minister can meet with the non-practicing members of the faithful.
It is thus desirable that Priests and Deacons, even at some sacrifice to themselves, should preside personally at funeral rites in accordance with local custom, so as to pray for the dead and be close to their families, thus availing of an opportunity for appropriate evangelization.
**The non-ordained faithful may lead the ecclesiastical obsequies provided that there is a true absence of sacred ministers **and that they adhere to the prescribed liturgical norms. (111) Those so deputed should be well prepared both doctrinally and liturgically.
Unless you live in a remote area where there is that "true absence of sacred ministers", the priest and/or deacon should be doing this.
I was very upset when the funeral home did not secure a priest nor deacon for my grandmother's vigil. What I wound up having to do was to lead the rosary and that was it. I am neither a priest nor deacon. It would have been grossly ilicit for me to have "preached". Sadly, I have witnessed too many laity botch things up down here. What is sad, is that they are engaged in this particular "ministry" when there are a plethora of priests and deacons down here who are supposed to be doing the vigil.
Since a homily will be preached at the funeral Mass, there is no need for the laity to do anything other than pray. Again, the vigil falls to the priest and/or deacon to do.
Ecclesia de Mysterio, the precursor to Redemptionis Sacramentum, is an authoritative document of the Church and it is binding.