Many families are not familiar with making funeral and cemetery arrangements. Here are some of the most common questions and answers to better inform you.
What makes a Catholic Cemetery special?
A Catholic Cemetery is a ministry of the Catholic Church. Consecrated by a Bishop, they are sacred places that remind us all of our Lord’s promise of the resurrection. Within the Greater Toronto Area, all Catholic Cemeteries are owned and operated by the Archdiocese of Toronto.
May non-Catholics be buried in a Catholic Cemetery?
Yes. We believe that families should remain together even in death. A spouse, child, parent or relative who is not a Catholic may be buried in a Catholic Cemetery.
Does the Church allow for cremation?
Yes. Cremation has been an acceptable option for Catholics since 1963. The cremated remains must be treated with respect. They should be either interred or entombed. Scattering of cremated ashes is not permitted.
Can I arrange my burial and funeral wishes in advance?
Pre-planning will relieve your family of the emotional burden of making stressful decisions at the time of a death. By pre-planning you ensure that your wishes will be known and carried out. Our interest-free payment plans allow a family to work within a budget that they can afford.
What are the guidelines concerning flowers?
Fresh cut or artificial flowers are permitted on the grounds in the vase from April 1 – October 31. No fresh flowers are permitted in the mausoleum. All mausoleum funeral arrangements are disposed of each day at 3:00pm. Ground burial funeral flower arrangements are removed approximately 2 days after the funeral.
When is the spring and fall cleanup?
On November 1st all decorations other than wreaths on wreath stands will be removed and disposed of. Permanent vases will be turned over in their storage position from November 1st to March 31st. As of April 1st all decorations other than fresh cut or artificial flowers in a vase will be removed from grave sites.
When are wreaths permitted?
Wreaths on stands are permitted from November 1 to March 31.
Are your Counsellors commissioned?
Our Counsellors are not commissioned; they are here to assist you and will not pressure you into buying anything you do not wish to purchase.
Do you operate a funeral home?
Yes, we have two funeral homes to serve you. Families can arrange all of their funeral, cremation and burial needs at either Holy Cross Catholic Funeral Home located on the grounds of Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery or Catholic Cremation Services located at Assumption Catholic Cemetery. We are dedicated to providing compassionate care consistent with the values of our faith.
Do we have to use a vault?
It is your choice if you would like to use a vault. However, we recommend using a burial vault as a protective outer container for the casket. Many families select a burial vault for the peace of mind it brings.
Are candles and lanterns allowed?
Candles and lanterns are not permitted because of fire safety and vandalism reasons.
If we own interment rights and we move can we sell them?
While Catholic Cemeteries & Funeral Services permits the private re-sale of interment rights there are specific steps required to ensure the transfer of ownership is registered in the cemetery’s records. In order to re-sell interment rights privately an Interment Rights Holder must follow a specific process, complete the appropriate paperwork, and register the re-sale on the cemetery records.
Where the interment rights have been paid in full and a Certificate of Interment Rights has been issued by Catholic Cemeteries & Funeral Services (CCFS) to the Interment Rights Holder, the Interment Rights Holder may sell their interment rights to another Catholic person(s) at a price not more than the prevailing price of the Cemetery in keeping with the Owner’s By-Laws Section 1 under “Purpose of Cemetery” and Section 5(e) under “Instructions to Interment Rights Holders” and the Funeral Burial and Cremation Services Act and the Regulations thereunder. CCFS, at its sole discretion, may agree to repurchase the interment rights from the Interment Rights Holder at a mutually agreeable price. All transfer/re-sale arrangements are subject to a CCFS administration fee. If the original Certificate of Interment Rights Certificate cannot be located, CCFS may issue a duplicate Interment Rights Certificate to facilitate the sale or transfer endorsement. An administration fee will apply. No burials, entombments or memorials may have taken place within any of the graves, niches or crypts identified on the Certificate of the Interment Rights. If any of the graves, niches or crypts have been memorialized the memorial must be removed and the expense of the Interment Rights Holder.
For more information please contact the cemetery office directly.
What is the care & maintenance fund?
The care and maintenance fund is a trust fund established by the Catholic Cemeteries – Archdiocese of Toronto from funds received from the sale of interment rights, markers, or marker installations for the purpose of providing money for the Care and Maintenance of the cemetery.
Can anyone be buried in our lot?
The interment rights holder of the grave must give permission in writing for any interment and the number of burials permitted will be determined by the type of interment rights.
What happens to the ownership when I die?
The responsibility for ownership will then pass to the trustee(s) of your estate. In most cases, this is your children. They will then handle the affairs at the cemetery. It is a very good idea to have a written Will naming trustees, heirs, etc.
Are pets permitted on cemetery grounds?
No. Catholic Cemeteries bylaws do not allow animals on our properties, however, we do recognize that some individuals deal with a variety of different disabilities that may require “service animals” that provide certain services or assistance on a daily basis. Thus, Catholic Cemeteries allows for an exception to be made for any and all certified “service animals” for which proper documentation may be requested if not readily apparent.
Catholic Cemeteries & Funeral Services – Archdiocese of Toronto is a full supporter of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005, and the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service Regulation 429/07.