OCF 417: A Worthy Vessel and Interment

417. The cremated remains of a body should be treated with the same respect given to the human body from which they come. This includes the use of a worthy vessel to contain the ashes, the manner in which they are carried, the care and attention to appropriate placement and transport, and the final disposition. The cremated remains should be buried in a grave or entombed in a mausoleum or columbarium. The practice of scattering cremated remains on the sea, from the air, or on the ground, or keeping cremated remains in the home of a relative or friend of the deceased are not the reverent disposition that the Church requires. Whenever possible, appropriate means for recording with dignity the memory of the decased should be adopted, such as a plaque or stone which records the name of the deceased.

One practice I see that could be a little more dignified is omitting the abbreviated reference “cremains.”

The attention to placement and transport is also worth an extra look: no urns carried under the arm, or accidentally left on the floor.

As for interment, it’s a rare parish that still retains a cemetery. But some are providing a columbarium for parishioners whoh have chosen to be cremated.

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
This entry was posted in Order of Christian Funerals, post-conciliar liturgy documents, Rites. Bookmark the permalink.

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