December 14. Funeral and Interment in the Crypt of the Prelatic Church
The casket with the body of Bishop Javier Echevarría was closed at 3:45 pm. His body was dressed in violet priestly vestments, along with his bishop’s ring and pectoral cross. The casket was closed in the presence of members of the General Council and the Central Advisory, the councils that assist the Prelate in governing the Prelature. The cover of the casket bears a silver crucifix and a plaque with the Prelate’s name and the dates 1932 - 2016.
At 5 pm the burial Mass was celebrated. In his homily, Msgr. Fernando Ocáriz said that “his faith led Bishop Javier Echevarría to realize deeply that he was a son of God and this helped him to overcome difficulties and suffering, including physical. He lived the virtue of charity very well and urged us to always live fraternity. ‘May you love one another!’ he always told us. And like us, he hoped in the promise of Heaven. When a person has faith, hope and charity, the greatest suffering becomes bearable, because Jesus carries it.”
“We need to thank him,” Msgr. Ocáriz added, “for his life of service to the Church, first alongside Saint Josemaría and Blessed Alvaro, and then during the 22 years that he was at the head of Opus Dei. He followed our Lord’s example, who came not to be served but to serve.”
Following the Mass, eight priests carried the coffin in procession to the crypt of the Prelatic Church, where it was interred. The burial site of Bishop Echevarría is located beside the tomb of Blessed Alvaro del Portillo. Msgr. Ocáriz prayed a response and the coffin was lowered in the tomb and covered with a tombstone.
Romana, No. 63, July-December 2016, p. 234-235.