The Vigil Service usually takes place during the period of visitation and viewing at the funeral home or St. Anthony’s Church. The vigil is a time to remember the life of the deceased and to commend him/her to God. In prayer we ask God to console us in our grief and give us strength to support one another. 

The Vigil Service can take the form of a Service of the Word with readings from Sacred Scripture accompanied by reflection and prayers. It can also take the form of one of the prayers of the Office for the Dead from the Liturgy of the Hours. The pastor and your funeral director can assist in planning a vigil. 

It is most appropriate, when family and friends are gathered together for visitation, to offer time for recalling the life of the deceased. For this reason, eulogies are usually encouraged to be done during visitation or at the Vigil Service.  Paraphrased from United States Council of Catholic Bishops: An Overview of Catholic Funeral Rites | USCCB