Catholic Mass cards provide friends and family with a unique opportunity to show their love and support for a grieving loved one. You can send one of these cards to mark the death or anniversary of someone’s passing or another date that holds special meaning to the deceased person’s family.
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Mass cards are incredibly special and deeply meaningful — they send the message that you care enough to see that your loved one is specifically remembered during Mass and prayed for.
All Catholics understand that prayer helps provide encouragement, strength, and healing during difficult times. Here’s how to send a Mass card.
How to Send a Physical Catholic Mass Card
Sending a Catholic Mass card is appropriate after a Catholic funeral service or on the anniversary of a friend or loved one’s death.
If you want your friend to know that you’ll be remembering them during a special memorial Mass, it’s also appropriate to send a Catholic Mass card. If you’re planning to send a Mass card for the first time, here are the steps you’ll take.
1. Visit a local parish office
The first step in obtaining a Mass card is to visit your local parish office. If you’re not in the same parish as the person you’re giving the card to, you may want to visit your relative or friend’s parish office instead.
By getting a Mass card from their parish, it makes it more likely that they’re able to attend the Mass where they are prayed for. If you live too far away from their parish, contact your own parish office instead.
2. Receive a Mass card
Depending on the size and location of your parish, you’ll need to see the secretary, gift shop, or, in some cases, the priest.
You can purchase a single Mass card, or a packet of cards if you plan to give more than one Mass card.
3. Provide a donation
Donations are encouraged but optional. All donations received go to help church ministries. Depending on your location, suggested donations are typically small.
If you desire, you may donate as much as you wish during this process. You can use this as an opportunity to donate any amount to the church on behalf of your friend or relative’s loved one.
4. Set time and day for Mass
Depending on how large of a church you attend, setting up a time for Mass could be tricky. If you want a particular day, then it’s important to plan well in advance. Churches often have multiple Masses each day, but schedules fill up quickly. If your date is around important holidays, feast days, or popular saint days, request a Mass several weeks to a month in advance.
For those who attend smaller parishes, you may not have a problem getting the date you desire. If you want to increase the chances of your friend or loved one attending on their Mass day, set the Mass to a time when they will be off of work. You may also consider offering to babysit if necessary so a husband and wife can go to Mass while you care for their small children.
5. Fill out the card
Take all the information you have regarding the Mass and fill out the card with:
- Time and place of the Mass
- Who the Mass is offered for
- Name of the person offering Mass
Make sure your details are accurate, as this is the only card that will inform your friend or loved one where and when the Mass is held for their loved one. Many want to attend these special occasions to add their own prayers to the ones said for their deceased relative.
6. Give the card
If there is a week or more before the Mass date or your friend lives far away, mail the Mass card. You can also hand it to your friend in person.
Giving someone a Mass card can be as personal as you want. Take your loved one out to lunch with a special sympathy gift. The way you present the card is entirely up to you and what you feel will best show your friend or loved one how much you care.
How to Send a Catholic Mass Card Online
If you want to send Catholic condolences but are unable to obtain a physical Catholic Mass card you can send a card online instead. The process is simple and takes only a few minutes of your time to complete.
1. Choose an online card
When obtaining a Mass card online, you have many more options than if you get a physical card. If your parish offers online cards, simply apply for a card and follow the steps below. If your parish doesn’t offer online cards, there are plenty of churches that do. Ask yourself whether the recipient would like a card from their local parish or if there is a more fitting location or church.
If the recipient isn’t a regular church attendee, they may find it interesting if you obtained a Mass card from a church that held meaning for the deceased or from a church located in a place that was important to the deceased. Thanks to the internet, you can get Mass cards from churches and monasteries all around the world.
2. Fill out basic information
Online Mass cards will come with a form to fill out, depending on the type of card. If you’re sending a digital or e-card, you’ll need the recipient’s email address. If the church will send a physical card for you, you’ll need the mailing address.
Most churches that offer online cards will offer to mail out the card. If you only want your friend or relative to be emailed, simply check the corresponding box.
When filling out the online Mass card form, you will need:
- Recipient’s name
- Recipient’s email address
- Payment information for donation
- Your billing address
- Your email address
- Your phone number
3. Provide a donation
Mass cards are never purchased, as doing so would be considered a sin. The Catholic Church is clear on this subject and has ruled that the spiritual acts of service and mercy should never be “sold.” As a result, when you obtain a Mass card, there is an opportunity to provide a donation. These donations go to missionaries and ministries of the church that offers a prayer on behalf of your friend or relative.
Suggested donations often accompany the online form, but this is just a guideline. If finances are an issue, you will never be turned away if you’re unable to make a donation when you order Mass cards. If, however, you would like to donate on behalf of the deceased, this is a perfect opportunity to do so. Donations are not limited to the suggested amount and all are welcome.
4. Fill out Mass request
Since you’re completing the entire process online, you will also request Mass online. For this section, you will fill out the person’s name who is to be prayed for and mark whether they are living or deceased. You will also be asked to provide any special instructions regarding your request.
Unless you’re filling out an online form directly with your parish, you may not be able to decide the day or time of Mass. Many parishes that offer the ability to request Mass online will schedule it when they have an available slot. If you desire a specific date or time, you’ll need to leave this information in the “special instructions” area of the Mass request form. If you leave it blank, Mass will be said for your friend’s or loved one’s relative at the earliest available opportunity.
5. Double check information
Once you hit submit on the form, you won’t be able to get it back. It’s important to double-check all information including the recipient’s email address or physical address, and the person’s name who is to receive prayer.
Since this information will be placed on the Mass card that is sent to your friend or loved one, you want to ensure that all information is spelled accurately. Just one missing letter on an email address and your friend will never know what you did on their loved one’s behalf.
5. Submit information
Thanks to the ease of online forms, once you hit “submit,” your form will be sent to the appropriate parish members who will then do the following:
- Fill out the card with the time and date of Mass
- Send the ecard to your friend or relative
- Send a physical card to your friend or relative (if the option is selected)
- Say a prayer on behalf of your friend or relative’s loved one
If you choose to have the parish send a physical card to your friend or loved one, they will do so at no extra cost to you. Once the date and time of their Mass are scheduled, the card will be updated with the proper information and mailed to the recipient’s address.
Remembered in Prayer
Remembering the deceased relative of a friend or loved one in prayer is a wonderful way to express your condolences, sympathy, and care after death. Though prayer won’t take away the pain of loss, it will provide a sense of comfort and encouragement to those who are left behind.