Some of the precautions put in place in March to protect the public from the spread of the coronavirus meant that individuals who died – whether from the virus or another cause – could not be remembered and mourned in the customary manner.

For much of that time, churches were closed, Masses were prohibited and access to the burial was restricted, leaving family members without a faith-based experience in which to express their grief and pray with one another for their loved one.

In the absence of these rituals, Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M., will seek to bring some solace to the bereaved through the celebration of a Mass of Requiem, or Memorial Mass, which can be viewed on beginning June 17 at 2 p.m.  Taking place in St. Anne Cemetery and Mausoleum in Wall, the Mass will remember in a special way those in the Diocese who died after March 1 from COVID-19 or any other cause. The Bishop will pray over a list of more than 1,100 names submitted by 65 of the parishes across Burlington, Mercer, Monmouth and Ocean Counties.

Bishop O’Connell will offer words of comfort to the bereaved during his homily, which will reflect on grief as “the price we pay for love,” and examine the true meaning of death for those who believe in Jesus Christ. He will speak on the importance of remembrance and the “immortality of memories.”

When announcing this Mass, Bishop O’Connell explained that he will lead the faithful in gathering up all of the grief and sadness that surrounds the deaths of their loved ones and present it to God.

Go to for full coverage of the Mass of Requiem after June 17.