Who May be Buried in a Catholic Cemetery?
The church expects the burial of Catholics in Catholic cemeteries. To avoid breaking close family ties, non-Catholic members of Catholic families may be interred in a Catholic cemetery. In the Diocese, Catholic burial, including the funeral Mass, is permitted for a baptized non-Catholic who might reasonably be presumed to desire or prefer Catholic burial services. Such a decision would be appropriate where the non-Catholic party worshipped regularly at the Catholic Church or identified with the Catholic Church more than any other.
Since 1963, cremation has been an acceptable option for those of the Catholic faith. Whenever possible, however, the church always prefers the interment or entombment of the body because it gives fuller expression to our Christian faith.
When cremation is chosen, the preferred sequence for the final rites is for cremation to take place after the Funeral Mass. Whether cremation takes place before or after the funeral rites, the church expects these families to seek an appropriate final resting place for the cremated remains of the body. The scattering of the cremated remains or keeping the cremated remains in a home are not the reverent disposition that the church requires.