When a family suffers the loss of a loved one, about 50 difficult decisions must be made within hours, but cemetery pre-planning sets most details ahead of time and can ease much of a grieving family’s anxiety and burden associated with the difficult planning process.

“The worries of last-minute burial planning should not become part of a family’s grieving process, especially when experiencing a great deal of emotional pain and suffering from loss,” says Andrew P. Schafer, executive director of the Catholic Cemeteries of the Archdiocese of Newark. That is why Catholic Cemeteries, a ministry of the Archdiocese of Newark, regularly reaches out to families to inform them about the benefits of pre-planning, he explains.  “Time and again, grieving families attest to the appreciable difference of pre-set arrangements in easing their time of loss.”

To assist families in learning more about cemetery pre-planning and memorialization, Catholic Cemeteries is hosting open house events at cemeteries throughout New Jersey. Memorial Planning Advisors will be available to answer questions and share information about services, the many burial options, and financial planning. No appointment is necessary and no obligation is expected. The events are open to the Catholic community. Locations and dates include:

Holy cross ad open house april







  • Holy Cross Cemetery & Mausoleum, 340 Ridge Road, North Arlington, NJ, April 2 & 3, 9:00am to 4:30pm
  • St. Gertrude Cemetery & Mausoleum, 53 Inman Avenue, Colonia, NJ, April 16 & 17, 9:00am to 4:30pm
  • Holy Name Cemetery & Mausoleum, 823 West Side Avenue, Jersey City, NJ, April 30 & May 1, 9:00am to 4:30pm

New Video Highlights Meaningful Church Rituals at Time of Loss

Catholic Cemeteries recently introduced a short video highlighting the significance of the Church’s funeral rituals to support Catholics during their time of loss. The six-minute video, “Many Travelers, One Journey,” weaves together the touching narrated stories of multiple individuals describing how family, friends and Church community come together to pray and comfort each other, celebrate the faith and life of their loved one, and share in the three principal parts of the Catholic funeral liturgy – the Vigil, Funeral Mass and Committal Service – known as the Order of Christian Funerals.

The informative video was released to coincide with this Jubilee Year of Mercy, in which the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy are reaffirmed and encouraged, including burial of and prayers for the deceased.  It accompanies a planning booklet, Continuing the Journey, Preparing a Catholic Funeral, which offers information on coping with the death of a loved one, ministry resources at a time of loss, Scripture Readings for Funerals, practical preparations, information on pre-planning, and more.  The video and booklet are available online at

 About Catholic Cemeteries

Catholic Cemeteries, a ministry of the Archdiocese of Newark, tends to the needs of individuals and families before, at the time of, and after death. This includes caring assistance with cemetery pre-planning, compassionate support at the time of death, facilitating a loved one’s interment in a holy place, support throughout bereavement, and perpetual cemetery care. The Archdiocese of Newark operates 10 Catholic cemeteries vital to the Catholic community for more than 160 years.  Over one million loved ones are interred in our cemeteries, and daily care is provided for each holy space and the entirety of each cemetery, perpetually.  Catholic Cemeteries recognizes the deep religious significance of the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy involved in the burial of and prayers for a loved one and the sanctity of the Order of Christian Funerals. To learn more, visit or connect on Facebook and Twitter.
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