Catholic Funeral & Cemetery Services (CFCS) is a non-profit organization founded in faith and dedicated to providing education, support and resources during life’s most difficult moments. We exert every effort to enable individuals to achieve their final wishes, and empower families to make thoroughly informed decisions.
What are the Catholic Funeral Rites in the Order of Christian Funerals?
The Catholic Funeral Rites in the Order of Christian Funerals are a celebration of faith that enable loved ones and the community to mourn by focusing on the promise of everlasting life and the hope of Resurrection in Christ. There are three distinct rites provided at the time of the funeral. Each rite serves an important purpose in guiding our family and friends through loss, grief and the journey of healing. The three rites include:
- The Vigil & Visitation – The vigil & Visitation is often the first time family and friends gather for prayer and support, in remembrance of a treasured life.
- The Funeral Liturgy – The Funeral Mass is the principle celebration of the Christian Funeral, where family and friends join to reaffirm that life has not ended. It is the memorial of Christ’s sacrifice, and is a reminder that we are one with Christ in life, death and Resurrection.
- The Committal – The Committal is the final service and time of interment. Here, family and friends gather to take their final leave with the comfort and promise of everlasting life in the Resurrection.
Why should I pre-arrange my end-of-life services?
Pre-arranging your funeral and cemetery plans removes the financial and emotional burden often left behind. It allows you to make your wishes known and provides your family with direction in what often is a very stressful time. Pre-arranging your end-of-life services allows you to lock in today’s prices while choosing from many affordable options, designed to fit all family budgets. We offer no interest financing and flexible payment terms. To learn more, please click here
What is the Mother Teresa Program?
As one of the many ministries of the Diocese, CFCS is guided by faith and the teachings of the Holy Catholic Church. Burying the dead is one of the corporal works of mercy and the Mother Teresa Program provides funeral and cemetery assistance to families in need in our community, regardless of their faith. No family is ever turned away! Mother Teresa firmly believed that love begins at home and that we should reach out to those in need. It is in this spirit that CFCS created the Mother Teresa Program that allows the poor and destitute in our community to receive sacred and dignified funeral and cemetery services. To learn more or donate to the Mother Teresa Program, please call (855) 895-4612.
Do I have to be Catholic to utilize your services?
No, CFCS offers full mortuary and cremation services to all faiths. CFCS is dedicated to supporting all families, parishes and communities. Our mission is to serve with compassion and care.
What is the Church's position on cremation?
While there is a preference for traditional burial, as Christ was buried in the tomb, the Church as permitted cremation for over 50 years. Cremation should respect the human body and belief in the Resurrection.
When should the cremation occur?
The preference is for cremation to occur following the funeral liturgy so that the body can be present for the vigil and funeral services. However, it is possible to have a memorial service with the cremated remains present.
What is the proper handling of cremated remains?
The Church teaches that cremated remains should be kept together (not scattered or divided) to respect the body as the temple of the Holy Spirit and preferably interred in the consecrated grounds of a Catholic Cemetery.
Do Catholic Cemeteries accept cremated remains?
Yes, the Catholic Church eliminated its prohibition against cremation. Although cremation represents a means of disposition preferred by many, it is not the ‘final disposition’ – burial is. Human cremated remains are still the body of the deceased – just in a different form. Thus, cremated remains should be treated with the same respect as the ‘full’ body is treated prior to cremation. Honoring and respecting the deceased by keeping their remains safe, undisturbed, and memorialized in a cemetery is a time-honored tradition.
What cemetery options do I have?
Our cemeteries are sacred places for the living to memorialize their loved ones, with a variety of burial choices including personalized glass front niches and beautiful cremation burial sites. Our Family Heritage Program allows for cremated remains to be placed in an existing grave or crypt, allowing families the ability to be with loved ones already interred in our cemeteries. Financial concerns should never stop one from choosing a place of permanent remembrance. As such we offer free of charge to people of all faiths, the dignified placement of cremated remains with our All Souls Remembrance Program.
What is the All Souls Remembrance Crypt?
CFCS offers at no charge, to anyone, of any faith, who has cremated remains at home or is considering scattering, a dignified committal at any of our cemeteries. The committal will occur at the All Souls Remembrance Crypt, following the Order of Christian Funerals and then the remains will be permanently interred within the consecrated grounds of a Catholic Cemetery. This program is open to all faiths and funeral homes.
Who can be buried at a Catholic Cemetery?
Catholic cemeteries have a long tradition of dedicated service to the Catholic Community including non-Catholic spouses, children, parents and other relatives. Christians with a connection to the Catholic community may also be buried in the Catholic Cemeteries.
If I'm divorced and remarried can I be buried in a Catholic Cemetery?
Yes. For more information, or if you have additional questions, please contact your parish priest.
Why should Catholics be buried in a Catholic Cemetery?
It is only natural that those who share the same faith in life will wish to carry on that sense of community in death. When it comes to the issue of death, the sensibilities and needs of Catholics are unique and call for certain practices in the handling and care of the remains of the deceased. Therefore, in the blessed grounds of a Catholic cemetery there are safeguards – mandated by the Church’s Canon Law – which guarantee permanence, reverence and respect for the remains of the deceased.
Should I buy space for the entire family?
It has been our experience that generally, a husband and wife buy space for themselves. Many families decide to purchase adjoining plots to form a family group. Family plots are also available and can accommodate larger headstones. Crypts for full-size caskets and niches for cremated remains may be purchased individually or in family groups.
Should I choose a crypt or a grave?
Personal preference and/or family tradition influence choices in this regard. Above-ground entombment in a crypt building is appealing, especially to those people who aren’t comfortable with traditional below-ground burial. Indoor mausoleum crypts are conducive to visitation in inclement weather.
What is a Family Estate?
Family estates are custom designed burial plots that allow families to build lasting tributes for generations to come. Family estates range in all different sizes and options from large family mausoleums to beautiful garden burial sites with large monuments representing the family name, to cremation pedestal gardens. To learn more about creating a Family Estate, please speak to any Family Service Advisor at any of our locations.
What kind of monument can I purchase?
Monuments conform to the regulations that govern different areas of the cemetery. These regulations are not arbitrary, but are designed to both enhance the care and overall beauty and character of each section of the cemetery. Memorial benches are available in various sections in the cemetery.
Is there any chance my grave will be re-sold after a specified number of years?
No. The purchaser has an exclusive and permanent right of use through an easement conveyed by Catholic Cemeteries. This right passes to direct blood heirs immediately after the death of the recorded owner, although the spouse has the first right of burial. This applies to all graves, crypts and niches in the cemetery. Written permission of the heirs-at-law may be required for burial. It is advisable to secure permission in advance and place it on file in the cemetery office to prevent unnecessary stress at the time when permission is essential.
Can someone who committed suicide be buried in a Catholic Cemetery?
Yes. It is recognized that those who die from the act of suicide deserve understanding and compassion. The deceased may have been suffering from a serious psychological instability, or overwhelming fear and confusion. Therefore, the Church offers funeral and burial rites for those who may have died as a result of suicide. The American edition of the Catholic ritual includes prayers for this specific situation. These prayers evoke forgiveness for the departed and consolation to their family.
What is the All Souls Remembrance Program?
CFCS offers at no charge, to anyone, of any faith, who has cremated remains at home or is considering scattering, the dignified committal of the remains at any of our cemeteries or the Cathedral of Christ the Light Mausoleum. Learn more about the All Souls Remembrance Program.
What is the Family Heritage Program?
CFCS allows family members who choose cremation to be buried in an existing family grave or crypt. Transform an existing grave or crypt into a family plot and create a place of remembrance for generations to come. Learn more about the Family Heritage Program.
What is the Mother Teresa Program?
The Mother Teresa Program is a fund that allows the poor and destitute in our community to receive sacred and dignified funeral, cremation and cemetery services. Learn more about the Mother Teresa Program.
Are there advantages to buying burial space and planning my funeral before my family actually needs it?
Yes. By making arrangements in advance, Catholic families can secure peace of mind and avoid emotional overspending. Additionally, CFCS offers flexible interest-free payment plans that assist you in ensuring your wishes are met. Contact us today to speak to an experienced and knowledgeable Family Service Advisor about your options.
Why should I preplan?
By making arrangements in advance, families can avoid confusion at the time of bereavement and assure themselves of cremation arrangements they desire, and at a price they wish to pay. Contact us today to speak to an experienced and knowledgeable Family Service Advisor about your options.
Do you offer discounts for pre-planning burial services?
Yes, we have many discount programs available for families interested in planning in advanced. To learn more about qualifying for one or more of our many discount programs, please speak to a Family Service Advisor at any CFCS location.
Do I have to pay a monthly maintenance fee?
No. A one-time endowment care fee is charged at the time you purchase a grave, crypt or niche. The money is placed in a special trust fund, the proceeds of which are used to cover future maintenance costs throughout the cemetery.
How do I pay for my burial arrangements?
There are a variety of payment options and terms designed to give you the flexibility to remain within your personal budget. Cash, check, MasterCard, Visa, and American Express are honored for your convenience. Terms may be arranged with a minimal down payment made at the time of a pre-need purchase, followed by monthly payments with zero interest fees. At the time of death, the burial arrangements must be paid in full. Special terms are available for persons in need.
Do I have to pre-qualify for financing?
No. Everyone qualifies for our pre-planning finance program. We do not run credit checks, nor do we charge interest on our finance terms. Our mission is to serve all families and make it easy for families to plan ahead with flexible payment terms and minimal down payment programs. Planning ahead is one of the greatest gifts you can give to your loved ones; we want to make it easy.