Since the earliest days of the Catholic Church, burial of the dead on grounds near the parish church has been desirable as it is symbolic of the cycle of life within the Church. In 1963 The Congregation of the Doctrine of Faith lifted the ban on cremation. Cremated remains were allowed inside the church for Christian burial beginning in 1998.
At Our Lady of the Assumption we are pleased to offer the Columbarium located in the Garden of Memories as a sacred space that members of our parish family may choose as a final resting place.
I invite you to prayerfully consider choosing burial in our garden.
– Father Jim Duffy, SM
Buying your columbarium niche now helps you, your loved ones, and OLA. Please contact Benny Strozier, 404-261-7181 x 132 to set up an appointment to complete contract paperwork.
The Catholic Church and Cremation
“The Church prefers the burial of the body but does allow cremation.”1 “In cases where cremation is planned, the church urges that if at all possible, the body be present for the funeral Mass with cremation taking place afterwards. However, if for some reason cremation takes place before the funeral Mass, the diocesan bishop can permit the practice in his diocese of allowing cremated remains to be brought into the Church for the funeral rites. Whenever a Catholic is cremated, the remains are to be buried, not scattered.”2
The Benefits of Burial at OLA
Perpetual Care: The Code of Canon Law requires the Catholic Church to perpetually maintain its places of burial. Therefore, proper and perpetual care of the columbarium is assured.
Security: Proximity on constantly occupied, well-lighted Church grounds assures optimum security with 24 hour video surveillance.
Convenience: With your final resting place only a few feet away from the Church, your family and friends attending Mass will not have the inconvenience of driving to another location for an occasional visit to pay their respects.
Serenity: Our columbarium design offers a serene, peaceful environment for meditation and quiet reflection.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Columbarium? A columbarium is an arrangement of openings (niches) in a wall into which an urn or other worthy vessel is placed for the inurment of cremated remains. The openings are 11 inches square and provide space for 1 or 2 urns.
What are the Advantages of a Columbarium Over Burial in a Cemetery? Many people choose burial in their parish’s columbarium because of a desire to be laid to rest at the church they loved and served. It also provides for more frequent visitation, meditation, and prayer. And, finally, the cost of inurment in the parish columbarium is significantly lower than the cost of burial in a cemetery.
Where is the OLA Columbarium Located? OLA’s Columbarium is located in the Garden of Memories directly in front of the church.
Who May be Buried in OLA’s Columbarium? The columbarium is intended primarily for the parishioners of Our Lady of the Assumption. However, a limited number of niches are available for purchase by relatives of OLA parishioners, friends of the parish, and Catholics from nearby parishes.
How Are Niches Assigned? At the time of purchase, you will select your niche with the assistance of the parish business manager.
How Are Niches Marked? Each niche will be covered with a gray marble slate on which the following is inscribed: the deceased’s legal name, date of birth, and date of death. All niches are inscribed in a uniform manner and are ordered by the parish.
How Much Time Elapses From the Funeral Mass Until the Remains are Inured? If the body is present at the Funeral Mass, the funeral director will advise you on the time needed for cremation. Usually, it is a day or two. If the cremated remains are present at the Funeral Mass, inurment immediately follows the Mass.
Is a Ritual Conducted at the Time of Inurment? Yes, the Rite of Committal is similar to the one that would take place at a gravesite in a cemetery.
May I Decorate the Area Near My Niche? The Garden of Memories and Columbarium are designed in a manner to be beautiful and serene. Additional decorations are not permitted in the area.
- Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2nd ed., 2301
- United States Conference of Catholic Bishops; United States Catholic Catechism for Adults; 1st edition (July 31, 2006), 16
Remember a loved one or a special occasion (wedding, baptism, confirmation, etc..) by purchasing a Memorial Brick to be placed in garden in front of the church. Memorial bricks make a great gift to commemorate a special occasion.
In the years to come, you will be able to bring your children and grandchildren to see your name and theirs as a permanent legacy at OLA.
Bricks are available for purchase in two sizes:
The small brick is 4” X 8” in sized and can be purchased for $200.00.
Engraved Text: Up to 3 lines 18 spaces per line